Denison Names Laura Ann Neff As New Dean of Students
Posted: April 13, 2007
Laura Ann Neff has been named as dean of students at Denison University. Neff, currently dean of students at Randolph-Macon College in Ashland, Va., will begin her duties at Denison this summer. A 1981 graduate of Denison, Neff served as an assistant to the deans in Denison's Office of Student Life immediately following her graduation, Then, while studying for her master's degree at The Ohio State University, Neff returned to Denison to complete a year-long graduate assistantship as administrative assistant to the dean of student life. She earned her master's degree in student personnel work in higher education at Ohio State in 1984.
Laura Ann Neff [jpg]
Neff has been at Randolph-Macon for five years and was previously at Westhampton College of the University of Richmond (Va.) for 16 years, serving in a variety of roles including area coordinator, associate dean and interim dean.
"Of course, I remember well Laurie's many accomplishments as a former student in the psychology department," said Vice President for Student Affairs and psychology department faculty member Sam Thios. "Laurie has had remarkable success in her work in student affairs. She will bring outstanding administrative experience, leadership, energy and excitement to her position," he continued. "But, very importantly, she combines those talents with a supportive and caring approach to her work with students and colleagues."
At Denison, the dean is responsible for the departments of campus and residential life, community rights and standards, alcohol, drug and health education and international student services, and provides leadership to foster a strong sense of community among students. Neff replaces Sarah B. Westfall who left to become vice president for student development and dean of students at Kalamazoo College (Mich). Although Neff will officially assume the post of dean in July, she will be on campus for much of Denison's first-year student orientation program in June.
During her career, Neff also has served as associate director of community development services at Trenton State College (N.J.), assistant director for residence life at Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University (Va.), and assistant residence hall director at Ohio State. She has made presentations at the American Association of Colleges and Universities, the American College Personnel Association, and the National Association of Student Personnel Administrators.
Neff was selected to attend the National Leadership Forum institute sponsored by the Office of Women in Higher Education of the American Council on Education in 2005. She also was recognized as the new professional of the year in 1987 and as the outstanding professional of the year in 1994 by the Virginia Association of Student Personnel Administrators. She was given the "Unsung Hero Award" at the University of Richmond and was recognized for her outstanding service toward the development of women by the American College Personnel Association.
Denison University, founded in 1831, is an independent, residential liberal arts institution located in Granville, Ohio. A highly selective college enrolling 2,100 full-time undergraduate students from all 50 states and dozens of foreign countries, Denison is a place where innovative faculty and motivated students collaborate in rigorous scholarship, civic engagement and the cultivation of independent thinking.
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