SUU Names New Deans in School of Business and College of Performing and Visual Arts

Published: May 06, 2024 | Read Time: 3 minutes

Southern Utah University Provost Dr. Jon Anderson announced the appointments of two new deans. Ken Hall will serve as Dean of the Dixie L. Leavitt School of Business, and Michael Schmidt has been appointed Dean of the College of Performing and Visual Arts. Both were selected after a national search.

“I’m proud to announce the hirings of Ken Hall and Michael Schmidt. Both will be great assets to the University and to the community,” said Provost Anderson. “After reviewing a large number of candidates and completing extensive searches, the visions shared by Ken and Michael fit well within the mission and direction of SUU. Both come with the depth of experience and perspective needed to enhance student success and build culture in a shared governance environment. We look forward to having them join SUU.”

Dean Ken HallDean Ken Hall has served as the interim dean for the School of Business for the past year. He has served SUU as a lecturer, associate dean and MBA director as well as leading strategic enrollment planning and hiring committees. He is a seasoned corporate executive having spent time with Bain & Company, Exxon, and Booz Allen Hamilton. He also served more than 10 years in senior leadership positions at PetSmart.

"As the new Dean of the Dixie L. Leavitt School of Business, I'm truly excited to dive into this journey alongside such a vibrant community of faculty, staff and students,” said Hall. “My aim is to build upon the growth and success we have experienced over the last few years and continue to strengthen our people, plans and processes. We’ll continue to enhance our educational experience so students not only have the knowledge to be prepared to step seamlessly into their careers or pursue further education, but that they will have the direction to shape their future with confidence and purpose. There is something wonderful about the Leavitt School of Business and I am sincerely honored to work with such amazing colleagues and students.”

Hall earned his Bachelor of Science in Chemical Engineering from Brigham Young University and his Master of Business Administration Degree from Harvard Business School. He began his appointment as Dean on May 1, 2024.

Dean Michael SchmidtDean Michael Schmidt currently serves as the interim dean of the College of the Arts and Tenured Professor of Art at Valdosta State University. He has served at that institution as a professor for more than two decades, with extensive scholarly and creative experience.

“My wife Nancy and I are very excited to join SUU, the CPVA, and the Cedar City community,” said Schmidt. “It's clear that the culture at SUU is one of positivity and support, and the institution is making strides in a forward direction. Stepping into this role is an incredible honor, especially following Shauna Mendini’s successful tenure as Dean. My goal is to foster an atmosphere of openness and transparency where artistic talents flourish, everyone is treated fairly and valued, and identifies an inclusive and accepting sense of place -- and knows that I am their advocate.”

Schmidt earned his Bachelor of Fine Arts from the University of Wisconsin-Whitewater and his Master of Fine Arts from Edinboro University of Pennsylvania. He has also completed extensive leadership development through the University System of Georgia. He will begin his appointment as Dean in early July 2024.

“I want to thank all who applied to serve as deans of these two colleges,” said Provost Anderson. “I also want to thank each member of the search committees who spent many hours conducting rigorous and engaging search processes.”

Tags: CurStu FacStaff School of Business Academic College of Performing and Visual Arts

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Nikki Koontz