With the Board of Trustees' approval of President Nancy S. Dye and the dean search committee's recommendation, Professor of History Clayton R. Koppes has been appointed acting dean of the College of Arts and Sciences for the 1996Ð97 academic year. He took office on July 1.
Professor of Classics James Helm had held the post on an interim basis since it was made vacant March 22 by the resignation of Mary Ella Feinleib. The dean search committee will continue its national search for a permanent replacement.
"Clayton Koppes is one of our hardest working and most widely respected faculty members," noted Dye in her announcement of the appointment. "His teaching is dynamic, vigorous and seriously engaged in scholarly issues of the day. Our students will miss him in the classroom, but we will have the advantage of his administrative talents and broad faculty perspective during this period of transition."
The first Irvin E. Houck Professor in the Humanities, from 1986 to 1991, Koppes has chaired the history department and is a veteran of more than 15 faculty committees--including chairmanship of committees for Research and Development, Lesbian/Gay/Bisexual Concerns, and the Environmental Studies Program. Koppes says he is "committed to building on Oberlin's traditional strengths and enhancing its receptiveness to cultural diversity."
A graduate of Bethel College, Koppes earned an M.A. at Emory and a Ph.D. at the University of Kansas. Before coming to Oberlin in 1978, he spent four years as a senior research fellow at California Institute of Technology.
His first book, JPL and the American Space Program: A History of the Jet Propulsion Laboratory, won the Society for the History of Technology's Dexter Prize in 1982. His Hollywood Goes to War: How Politics, Profits and Propaganda Shaped World War II Movies was published in 1987, and he is completing his third book, tentatively titled "What the People Should See: A History of Movie Censorship in America."
--Marci Janas '91
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