Deans Sought for Lynch, Carroll Schools

Deans Sought for Lynch, Carroll Schools

Fr. O'Keefe, Safizadeh are appointed interim deans as search begins

By Chronicle Staff
Boston College begins the 2003-04 academic year in search of new leadership for its education and management schools, having appointed interim deans to oversee those divisions in the meantime.

On Monday, Rev. Joseph O'Keefe, SJ, associate dean of the Lynch School of Education since 2001, formally took the reins as interim dean of the Lynch School. He replaces Mary Brabeck, who left after seven years as LSOE's top administrator to become dean of the Steinhardt School of Education at New York University.

Earlier this summer, Prof. M. Hossein Safizadeh was appointed interim dean for the Carroll School of Management. A professor in the CSOM Operations and Strategic Management Department, Safizadeh succeeded Helen Frame Peters, who stepped down in May to focus on teaching and research.

Academic Vice President and Dean of Faculties John Neuhauser said that search committees will be appointed shortly to seek candidates for the two positions. Prof. Frank Campanella (CSOM) will lead the search for Peters' successor, while the Lynch School search committee will be chaired by Prof. Penny Hauser-Cram (LSOE).

Announcing her decision to step down in July, Brabeck said she looked forward to embracing new professional challenges at NYU, but would deeply miss her many friends and colleagues at Boston College.

"Everything that attracted NYU to me as a candidate was formed at Boston College and I will always carry the University with me," said Brabeck, who expressed gratitude to University President William P. Leahy, SJ, and Neuhauser as well as LSOE administrators, faculty and staff.

Commenting on her resignation, Fr. Leahy offered praise to Brabeck for advancing the Lynch School during her tenure as dean. "Mary Brabeck has been both a dean with vision and drive and a wonderful contributor to the Jesuit, Catholic mission of Boston College," said Fr. Leahy. "The Lynch School is well positioned and we will continue to build upon its strong foundation."

During her tenure as dean, Brabeck - who joined the University as an assistant professor in 1980 - was credited with advancing the Lynch School's mission of working to improve the lives of children, youth and families through its commitment to high-quality teacher preparation, scholarly research and hands-on community outreach. Of particular note is the success of the Lynch School's ongoing collaboration with the Boston Public Schools, especially with the Gardner Elementary School in Allston.

As LSOE associate dean, Fr. O'Keefe has coordinated the school's outreach efforts to Catholic schools locally, nationally and internationally as well as dual degree programs associated with Catholic school education at the Lynch School. He has served for several years as coordinator of the Spiritual Growth Leadership Seminar and Selected Programs for Improving Catholic Education, both jointly sponsored by Boston College and the National Catholic Educational Association. He is also director of the research center at NCEA.

"Joe O'Keefe is well known and well respected by the Lynch School faculty and has the talent and experience necessary to direct the school during our search for a permanent dean," said Neuhauser. "We look forward to working with him this year."

A graduate of the College of the Holy Cross who joined the Society of Jesus in 1976, Fr. O'Keefe received a master's degree in French literature from Fordham University and a master's degree in educational administration from Harvard University. He also holds a doctorate in education from Harvard, and a master's degree in divinity and an STL from the Weston School of Theology.

While heading CSOM, Peters was credited with helping to raise the profile of the Carroll School as evidenced by its rise in the national rankings. The school's graduate program was ranked 39th among business schools at national universities, and its evening MBA program 17th, according to US News & World Report.

Safizadeh, who holds degrees from the Iran Institute of Banking and Oklahoma State University, was promoted to full professor in 1997. His research interest focuses on operations strategy in both manufacturing and service companies, and his work has appeared in such publications as Management Science, Journal of Operations Management, European Journal of Operational Research and Journal of Business Research.

In addition to his teaching and research, his activities at BC have included serving on a key management team for Project Delta, the University's broad-based effort to reduce operating costs by increasing productivity and efficiency.

Announcing Safizadeh's appointment as interim dean, Neuhauser praised his dedication to the Carroll School and its mission. "Safi is well known to all in the Carroll School for his tireless work in his department as well as his service to both the school and the University.

"Although he had a very busy agenda for the coming year he graciously agreed to set his work aside simply because he was needed in another role. I am grateful to him and look forward to working with him as we continue to move the Carroll School forward."


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