Nicholas B. Dirks is the new vice president for arts and sciences. “Nick is dedicated to intellectual life within the academy and in public affairs, internationalist in scope, and embracing of diverse perspectives,” President Lee C. Bollinger said. Dirks is the Franz Boas Professor of Anthropology and was chair of the Department of Anthropology from 1997 to 2004. Dirks, who specializes in South Asian and British colonial history, previously held a joint post in the Departments of History and Anthropology at the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor. There he founded the interdepartmental Doctoral Program in Anthropology and History and directed the Center for South and Southeast Asian Studies.

Jean E. Howard, a scholar of early modern English literature and faculty member since 1988, was named vice provost for diversity initiatives in September. Howard assumed a new position dedicated to increasing diversity on the faculty and senior levels of administration. “Columbia reaffirms its commitment to promoting intellectual excellence, recognizing that this goal can be realized only if the University, in all of its aspects, reflects the diversity of American society and of the complex world in which we live,” said Bollinger. Howard received a Guggenheim fellowship and has served as the director of Columbia’s Institute for Research on Women and Gender.

R. Glenn Hubbard, former chair of President Bush’s Council of Economic Advisers, became dean of Columbia’s graduate School of Business in July. Hubbard joined the Business School faculty in 1988 where he was co-director of the entrepreneurship program from 1998 to 2004. “Hubbard is the complete dean,” said former dean Meyer Feldberg. “He is experienced as a former senior vice dean of faculty, an innovator in the classroom, one of the School’s most popular teachers, and an internationally prominent scholar.”

In November, M. Dianne Murphy joined Columbia as its new director of athletics. Murphy was previously director of athletics and recreation at the University of Denver, where she transformed the school from Division II status into one of the nation’s top Division I programs. Murphy’s teams served as a model for regional and national academic excellence, with students maintaining an overall GPA of 3.266 for the 2003–04 academic year. “Murphy brings to Columbia an extraordinary mix of talents, the skills necessary to effectively manage and improve Columbia athletics, a strong work ethic, and attention to intellectual and personal growth of students,” said Bollinger.

This fall, David Schizer became the fourteenth dean of Columbia Law School. A corporate tax specialist, Schizer, 36, joined the Law School faculty in 1998 and is the youngest among deans of the nation’s top law schools. “Schizer’s combination of cutting-edge scholarship and extensive connections to the professional bar has earned him the respect of colleagues many years his senior,” said Michael C. Dorf, chair of the law faculty’s dean search committee. Schizer holds a JD from Yale and has clerked for U.S. Court of Appeals Judge Alex Kozinski and Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg.

Derek Wittner ’65CC ’68LW has been appointed dean of alumni affairs and development for Columbia College and deputy vice president of university development and alumni relations. Wittner practiced securities law before returning to Columbia as assistant dean of students in 1992 and was director of the College Fund from 1996 to 2000. He assumes his new roles after four years as associate dean for alumni affairs and development.