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UH names new VP for academic affairs

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The University of Hawaii has hired Risa Dickson, the former associate provost at California State University-San Bernadino, as its vice president for academic affairs.

Dickson, a communication studies professor, will serve as the 10-campus UH system’s chief academic officer with “responsibility for leadership, planning, and intercampus coordination of academic affairs, student affairs, policy and planning,” among other duties, the university said in a news release.

Dickson previously was associate dean of the College of Arts and Letters and executive assistant to the president for planning and special programs at the San Bernadino campus.

She holds a master’s degree in communication and a doctorate in interpersonal and organizational communication, both from the University of Southern California.

The UH Board of Regents previously approved a $19,168 monthly salary for Dickson, or $230,016 a year. The board this week approved granting her tenure upon appointment, which is effective Feb. 2.

Dickson replaces Linda Johnsrud, who had been UH’s longtime executive vice president/provost for academic affairs before stepping down in 2013 to take a job at the University of Texas.

UH President David Lassner said in a statement that the search committee that recommended Dickson was “particularly impressed with Risa’s strong data-based approach to addressing the challenges and opportunities facing higher education; her knowledge of national trends; her understanding of higher education systems; and her experience and commitment to serving underrepresented groups.”

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