Five Universities Announce the Appointments of African Americans to Positions as Deans

Renée McDonald Hutchins will be the next dean of the University of Maryland Francis King Carey School of Law in Baltimore, effective August 1. Since 2019 she has been dean at the David A. Clarke School of Law at the University of the District of Columbia. Dean Hutchins is widely recognized as a leading expert on the Fourth Amendment and criminal appellate practice.

Dean Hutchins graduated from Spelman College in Atlanta with a bachelor’s degree in mathematics. She earned a juris doctorate at Yale Law School.

Shawn Newton has been named associate vice president and dean of students at Salem State University in Massachusetts. He will assume the role on July 3. He is the former associate dean of students at Suffolk University in Boston. Earlier, he served on the staff at Salem State for 20 years in numerous student affairs roles, including assistant director of diversity and multicultural affairs and assistant dean of students.

Newton received his bachelor’s degree in criminal justice from Salem State. He holds a master’s degree in community and economic development from Southern New Hampshire University.

Buffy Smith has been appointed as the next dean of Dougherty Family College at the University of St. Thomas in Minnesota. She joined the college in 2016 and has served as interim dean for the past two years. Dr. Smith joined the faculty at the university in 2004 and has chaired the sociology department.

Professor Smith earned her bachelor’s degree in sociology from Marquette University in Milwaukee. She holds both a master’s degree and a Ph.D. in sociology with a minor in African American studies from the University of Wisconsin-Madison.

Grant Hayes will be the dean of the College of Community Innovation and Education at the University of Central Florida. Since 2019, he has been serving as interim provost and senior vice chancellor for academic affairs at East Carolina University in Greenville, North Carolina. Earlier, he spent four years as dean of the university’s College of Education.

Dr. Hayes earned his bachelor’s degree from Limestone College in Gaffney, South Carolina. He holds doctoral, master’s, and educational specialist degrees from the University of South Carolina.

Christopher J. King will be the inaugural dean of the School of Health at Georgetown University. He has been serving as an associate professor and chair of the department of health systems administration at the School of Nursing & Health Studies at Georgetown University.

Dr. King earned a bachelor’s degree in community health with a focus on education at East Carolina University in Greenville, North Carolina. He went on to earn a master’s degree in health science from Towson University in Maryland and completed his Ph.D. in health services administration from the University of Maryland.


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