Dean, College of Social and Behavioral Sciences

Northern Arizona University

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Four-Year Institution

Job Details

Dean, College of Social and Behavioral Sciences

Location: College of Social & Behavioral
Regular/Temporary: Regular
Job ID: 606519
Full/Part Time: Full-Time

Workplace Culture

NAU is a community devoted to student success and sustained by an unshakable commitment to our shared mission, vision, and values. We—faculty, staff, and administrators—thrive by combining our efforts and working side by side to further NAU's culture of excellence.

Job Description

Northern Arizona University invites nominations and applications for the position of Dean of the College of Social and Behavioral Sciences (SBS). The dean will collaborate with the University academic leadership team in pursuit of a strategic agenda to build high value programming that serves diverse students through inclusive academic excellence. The dean will be a tenured professor serving as the College's chief academic and administrative officer. Duties include overseeing academic programs, fundraising, and recruiting/retaining outstanding and diverse faculty, staff, and students. As the College's leader, the dean is expected to collaborate across the campus and champion the College's vision, goals, and achievements within the University and to the community at large.

Northern Arizona University seeks a dynamic administrator with proven ability to lead academic departments who embodies a philosophy that embraces the promotion of equity, diversity, and inclusion. The successful candidate will support students of all backgrounds in the rapidly changing world of higher education, supporting NAU's commitment to becoming the nation's leading university serving Native Americans while maintaining a focus on the University's Hispanic Serving Institute (HSI) status. The dean will be approachable, compassionate, supportive of the SBS team, and an inclusive decision-maker. They will be a person of integrity who listens well and communicates transparently.

The dean reports to the Executive Vice President & University Provost. The dean supervises the College leadership team of two associate deans, one assistant dean, thirteen directors and department chairs, as well as six collegewide staff.

  • Serve as chief academic officer of the College;
  • Provide leadership for strategic planning, including developing and enhancing the College's academic programs;
  • Guide college advancement, including development, marketing and communications, donor cultivation and fundraising, and alumni relations;
  • Recruit outstanding, inquisitive, and diverse students, facilitating equitable and just access to degree programs for all students, promoting balanced growth in enrollments and interest in the College's majors and programs;
  • Lead recruitment, supervision, professional development, and retention of strong and diverse faculty and staff;
  • Promote an environment where equity, diversity, inclusion, and justice are fostered accountably throughout the teaching, research, and service activities of the College;
  • Ensure continued accreditation and state approvals;
  • Support faculty research and the related development required to ensure continued, strong contributions in this area;
  • Promote and facilitate interdisciplinary programming and collaboration within the College and between the College and the broader university;
  • Work within the University and with external partners to advance the College programs, support faculty, and foster student success;
  • Manage College budget, course scheduling, and staff;
  • Participate in university governance, including serving on standing and ad hoc committees, and representing the College to external constituencies.

This search is being supported by Summit Search Solutions. To view the full position profile and background information on the role, please visit Summit's Position Profile.

Minimum Qualifications

  • A doctoral degree in a discipline related to one of the College's programs;
  • Academic/scholarly experience that qualifies you for tenure in one of the College's departments;
  • A minimum of five years of leadership in an academic setting with responsibilities that included budgets, strategic planning, personnel management, performance reviews, promotion and tenure decisions, and experience with accreditation processes;
  • A philosophy, vision, and experience that reflect a commitment to innovative and effective education, and teaching/learning in multiple contexts.

Preferred Qualifications

Leadership experience and qualities:
  • Support for shared governance and academic freedom;
  • Excellent interpersonal skills (e.g., listening well, treating others with respect, collaborative, and collegial);
  • Knowledge of current trends in higher education, demographic trends, and the ability to incorporate relevant issues and innovative thinking into strategic planning for the College;
  • Demonstration of visionary, future-focused leadership that encompasses creative, innovative, inclusive strategic planning reflecting a growth mindset and encompassing a commitment to excellence;
  • A focus on interdisciplinary opportunities and recognition that complex challenges require collaborative responses.

Administrative/management experience and skillset:
  • Experience recruiting, supervising, retaining, and managing professional development for strong and diverse faculty and staff;
  • Evidence of success in leadership roles such as department chair, director of programs, associate dean, or dean;
  • Experience and skill in developing and implementing a coordinated strategic plan;
  • Skill in building/facilitating collaborative efforts among diverse units;
  • Demonstrated budget development and management skills with a focus on fiscal responsibility and attention to equity issues;
  • Experience with broad student populations, including underserved and marginalized groups.

Academic experience:
  • Significant classroom teaching experience, including an understanding of the value and role of technology in teaching and program delivery;
  • A record of excellence in research/scholarly pursuits and a demonstrated commitment to interdisciplinary academic and professional programs;
  • Experience teaching and/or conducting service in diversity areas;
  • Experience with broad student populations including underserved and marginalized groups;
  • An understanding of the SBS disciplines - a willingness to learn and embrace new areas, as needed.

Fundraising experience:
  • Evidence of encouraging individuals and units to obtain external support for research;
  • Experience soliciting philanthropic gifts from individuals, foundations, and communities;
  • Experience preparing, submitting, and managing federal, state, local, and foundation grants and contracts.

Commitment to diversity:
  • Experience recruiting and/or supporting diverse students, faculty, and staff;
  • Experience designing or supporting programs with a diversity focus;
  • Scholarly and/or creative pursuits in support of diversity;
  • Broad community engagement.

General Information

Northern Arizona University has a student population of 29,569, including approximately 21,000 on its main campus in Flagstaff and the remainder at more than 20 locations statewide and online.

Committed to a diverse and civil working and learning environment, NAU has earned a solid reputation as a university with all the features of a large institution but with a personal touch, with a faculty and staff dedicated to each student's success. All faculty members are expected to promote student learning and help students achieve academic outcomes.

While our emphasis is undergraduate education, we offer a wide range of graduate programs and research. Our institution has carefully integrated on-campus education with distance learning, forming seamless avenues for students to earn degrees.

Flagstaff has a population of about 70,000, rich in cultural diversity. Located at the base of the majestic San Francisco Peaks, Flagstaff is 140 miles north of Phoenix at intersection of Interstate 17 and Interstate 40.

For information about diversity, access and equity at NAU, see the Center for University Access and Inclusion webpage.

COVID-19 Vaccine Requirement

As of 12/10/21, the Safer Federal Workforce employee vaccination requirement is currently suspended pending the outcome of a federal court-issued injunction. This injunction has suspended the recent executive order issued by President Biden requiring all employees of federal contractors to receive COVID-19 vaccinations. For current status of the vaccine requirement and/or questions, please visit FAQs for Employee Vaccination Requirement.

Background Information

This position has been identified as a safety/security sensitive position. Therefore, per AZ Revised Statute, Northern Arizona University requires satisfactory results for the following: a criminal background investigation, employment history investigation, degree verification (in some cases) and fingerprinting. If you are applying for a job that requires a CDL, you will be required to register with the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration Drug & Alcohol Clearinghouse and adhere to the clearinghouse requirements. Additionally, as an employer in the state of Arizona, NAU is required to participate in the federal E-Verify program that assists employers with verifying new employees' right to work in the United States. Finally, each year Northern Arizona University releases an Annual Security Report. The report is a result of a federal law known as the Clery Act. The report includes Clery reportable crime statistics for the three most recent completed calendar years and discloses procedures, practices and programs NAU uses to keep students and employees safe including how to report crimes or other emergencies occurring on campus. In addition, the Fire Safety Report is combined with the Annual Security Report for the NAU Flagstaff Mountain Campus as this campus has on-campus student housing. This report discloses fire safety policies and procedures related to on-campus student housing and statistics for fires that occurred in those facilities. If you would like a free paper copy of the report, please contact the NAUPD Records Department at (928) 523-8884 or by visiting the department at 525 E. Pine Knoll Drive in Flagstaff.


Commensurate with experience.


This is an Administrative Faculty (ADF) position. NAU offers an excellent benefit package including generous health, dental and vision insurance; participation in the Arizona State Retirement System (ASRS) or the Optional Retirement Program (ORP); 22 days of vacation, sick leave accruals, and 10 holidays per year; and tuition reduction for employees and qualified family members. More information on benefits at NAU is available at the NAU HR benefits page. Administrative Faculty are hired on a contract basis, renewable annually according to the terms of offer. Upon completion of the administrative assignment, employees will return to the faculty role, renewable according to the Conditions of Faculty Service. Academic year (9 month) faculty do not accrue vacation. Employees offered a position will be eligible for state health plans (including NAU's BCBS Plan). Employees will have 31 days from date of hire to enroll in benefits, and their benefits will then be effective the first day of the pay period following their completed enrollment. If a new employee chooses the Arizona State Retirement System (ASRS) retirement option, participation in the ASRS Plan (and the long-term disability coverage that accompanies it) will begin on the first of the pay period following 183 days of employment. New employees who choose to participate in the Optional Retirement Plan (ORP; an alternative to the ASRS plan) will begin to participate on the first day of employment. The long-term disability plan that accompanies the ORP will begin on the first day of the pay period following 90 days of employment. More information about NAU benefits is available at the NAU HR benefits page.
NAU is a tobacco and smoke-free campus.

Submission Deadline

A review of applications will begin immediately and continue until the position is filled; parties who apply by September 20, 2022 will be given first consideration.

How to Apply

A review of applications will begin immediately and continue until the position is filled; parties who apply by September 20, 2022 will be given first consideration.
  1. Click here to access the NAU Careers Application Site.
  2. Enter into the search bar at the top of the page.
  3. Click on the search results: Dean, College of Social and Behavioral Sciences.
  4. Scroll to the bottom of the page and click Apply.
  5. Sign In to access your account or if you are not an existing user select the New User link to create an account.
  6. Proceed as instructed to complete application.

As part of your application, please submit 1) a PDF version of your CV/resume; 2) a cover letter that describes both your motivation for application and how your leadership experience aligns with the key qualifications of the role; and, 3) a diversity statement (maximum two pages) that addresses the ways in which your personal and professional philosophy and related record as a leader in higher education align with the institution's vision to become a True Diversity University: A university environment exhibiting true diversity and inclusion where there exists a wealth of individuals whose unique experiences of race, ethnicity, religion, sexual and gender identities, disability, and other perspectives are valued and woven into the fabric of the institution.

To make recommendations or for more information, please contact:

Tammarah Townes Beth Baldino

Senior Consultant Senior Consultant

Summit Search Solutions, Inc. Summit Search Solutions, Inc.

Direct: 302-388-9480 Direct: 828-216-6606

[email protected]

FLSA Status

This position is exempt from the overtime provisions of the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) and therefore will not earn overtime or compensatory time for additional time worked.

Equal Employment Opportunity

Northern Arizona University is a committed Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action Institution. Women, minorities, veterans and individuals with disabilities are encouraged to apply. NAU is responsive to the needs of dual career couples.

EEO is the Law Poster and Supplements

NAU is an Employer of National Service. AmeriCorps, Peace Corps, and other National Service alumni are encouraged to apply.

To apply, visit

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Northern Arizona University (NAU) is a public university offering undergraduate, graduate, and professional degrees of high quality and societal value.  Students are at the center of the NAU experience, which is guided by a dedicated and distinguished faculty committed to teaching, individual engagement, and research excellence.

Our educational programs are designed to prepare our students for personal and professional success after graduation.

Whether they earn their degrees at our historic Flagstaff campus, regionally throughout Arizona, or online, we prepare our students to achieve their human potential in ways that serve the state, the region, the nation, and the world.

If you can see yourself as part of a university community dedicated to its students and their success, NAU might be the right fit for you.

Find Us
PO Box 4113 Flagstaff, AZ 86011
United States

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