New Dean Of Performing and Visual Arts AnnouncedJune 15, 2004
Author: Renee Ballenger
After conducting a national search with more than 40 applicants, William J. Byrnes has emerged as the choice of a Southern Utah University search committee as the new dean of the College of Performing and Visual Arts. The committee was chaired by Rod Decker, Dean of the College of Humanities and Social Sciences.
William Byrnes brings a rich background in teaching and leadership with the arts. For the past decade he has served as a tenured full professor and Associate Dean of Florida State University's School of Theatre which has more than 350 majors, more than 80 graduate students and a faculty and staff of 56. Since 1995 he also served as Director of Theatre Management in the MFA program. His text, "Management and the Arts," now in its third edition, is widely read in arts management courses throughout the world, including China and India.
While at FSU he oversaw the reorganization of an extensive production program, supervised a faculty and administrative staff, and was responsible for supervising the overall marketing for the School's production season. He taught a series of six graduate seminars in arts administration in support of the Theatre Management MFA and other arts administration degree programs. He also served on the planning committee for the local arts festival, titled, “Tallahassee: Seven Days of Opening Night”and he has been a member of the Board of Directors of the Southern Shakespeare Festival since its inception.
Prior to his service at Florida State, he served for more than 20 years in a variety of roles at Oberlin College, a first-rate liberal arts college in Ohio. He was production director, technical director, and director of the theatre and dance program, and Oberlin opera.
Mr. Byrnes will work with the faculty and staff of the departments of Art, Music, and Theater Arts and Dance to develop and strengthen the College. In addition, he will have oversight responsibility for the Braithwaite Gallery, the American Folk Ballet and will work with the Tony Award wining Utah Shakespearean Festival.
Mr. Byrnes maintains a strong international presence with his service on the Advisory Board of the Institute for Languages and Economics (ISW), an international culture management training school located in Germany. He regularly lectures at ISW and this summer he will be a guest speaker at the conference, “Mozart, Marketing and Money.” He is also a member of the Board of Directors of Association of Arts Administration Educators (AAAE), and was president of the U.S. Institute for Theatre Technology (USITT) in 2000-02. He is a Fellow of the Institute and was given the Founders Award in 1996 for his continued service to USITT and the theatre profession.
In December 2001, Byrnes was inducted into the National Theatre Conference (NTC), an honorary society of theatre professionals and educators. An award-winning lighting designer with more than 150 productions to his credit, he has lit numerous operas for regional companies across the eastern United States.
He holds a bachelor’s from the University of New Mexico and an MFA from UCLA.
Byrnes new position at SUU will take effect July 1, 2004.