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Appointments and transitions

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The College of Arts and Sciences welcomes new college leadership

composite image of 7 headshots

​​

Pictured​: Kimberly Blockett, Chad Gasta, Steve Tague, Joel Rosenthal, John Ernest, Eric Rise and Wendy Bellion.

​Several new department chairs were named in CAS, effective Sept. 1, 2022. In the department of Africana studies, Kimberly Blockett joined us from Pennsylvania State University – Brandywine. A scholar in 19th-century African-American literature, with a focus on women writers, literary, and religious history, and trans-Atlantic studies, Blockett is a former National Endowment for the Humanities Fellowship holder. Chad Gasta is the new chair of the department of languages, literatures, and cultures. He joins UD from Iowa State University, where he was a professor of Spanish and served as chair of its department of world languages and cultures.

In the department of theatre, Steve Tague has accepted an appointment as interim chair. Tague has acted at regional theatres, such as Seattle Repertory Theater, A Contemporary Theatre, and Walnut Street Theater, and his roles have included Hamlet, Macbeth, Richard III, and Henry IV. Joel Rosenthal has been named the chair of the department of chemistry and biochemistry. An organic chemist, Rosenthal's research focuses on sustainability, catalysis, and molecular energy conversion. Additionally, John Ernest's position as chair of the department of English has been renewed for another term. The Judge Hugh Morris Professor of English, Ernest is considered one of the world's top scholars in 19th century African-American literature.

Also, Eric Rise was appointed interim chair of the department of sociology and criminal justice, effective March 3, 2022. An award-winning teacher and advisor, Rise received the Jan Burrows Memorial Graduate Educator Award in 2022.

Additionally, Wendy Bellion was named the College of Arts and Sciences associate dean for the humanities, effective Sept. 1. Bellion's appointment is a reflection of her strong leadership in a number of capacities since she joined UD in 2004. She is a professor in art history and holds the Sewell C. Biggs Chair in American Art History. She also has served as the director of the Center for Material Culture Studies and the acting director of the Winterthur Program in American Material Culture.

Learn more about Bellion in this earlier UDaily article.

"Please join me in welcoming all of our new leadership across the college and please join me in extending our sincerest thanks to those who have completed their service," ​​says John A. Pelesko, dean of the College of Arts and Sciences.​

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CAS announces changes in numerous leadership positions
9/6/2022
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