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Marquart named provost, vice president for academic affairs

James MarquartAfter an exhaustive national search, President Kenneth Evans has named James Marquart as Lamar University’s next provost and vice president for academic affairs.

Marquart will succeed Steve Doblin, who is retiring after serving as provost and vice president for academic affairs at Lamar University for 13 years. Marquart will assume his duties on July 1, 2015.

Marquart, who holds a Ph.D. in sociology from Texas A&M University, has served as vice provost of academic affairs at the University of Texas-Dallas since 2012. He previously served as associate provost, dean of the School of Economic, Political and Policy Sciences, and department chair and professor of the criminology program at UTD.  Before joining the UTD faculty, Marquart was a professor at Sam Houston State University, 1989-1995, and on faculty at Mississippi State University, 1983-1986.

Marquart also served in a number of additional capacities, including as the director of research for the College of Criminal Justice, 1999-2000 and 2004-2005, director of the National Institute for Victims Studies, 2000-2003, and as the director of the Crime Victims' Institute at Sam Houston State University, 2003-2005.  

A native of Illinois, Marquart earned a bachelor’s degree in Law Enforcement Administration from Western Illinois University in 1976. Later that year, he enrolled in the Department of Sociology graduate program a Kansas State University. While pursuing the degree, he worked as a correctional officer in the Missouri State Penitentiary, Jefferson City, Missouri. He graduated with his master’s degree in 1978 and then enrolled at Texas A&M.  In 1981, Marquart obtained a position as correctional officer in the Eastham Unit, Texas Department of Corrections, and after serving one year, was promoted to sergeant in the same unit.  He supervised 105 employees.  His practitioner experience in corrections set the course for much of his academic research.  He graduated with his Ph.D. in 1983.

His research and teaching interests include prison organizations, capital punishment and criminal justice policy. One of the nation’s leading experts on prison systems. Marquart’s extensive academic record includes more than $2 million in funded research activity, presentations, more than 60 peer-reviewed journal articles and book chapters, and 7 books.

Early in his career, Marquart became involved in both the American Society of Criminology and the Academy of Criminal Justice Sciences. Marquart served as president of the Academy of Criminal Justice Sciences, 2010-2011. During his term in office, he oversaw the selection of new editors for both of the Academy's journals and oversaw one of the few international ACJS international conferences in Toronto, Canada. He was also selected as an academic fellow, Foundation for Defense of Democracies, 2007-2008.

He received the 2005 Bruce Smith Senior Award from the Academy of Criminal Justice Sciences, and the Leverhulme Visiting Professorship, Queen Mary and Westfield College, University of London, 1998.  He has received two outstanding book awards. An Appeal to Justice:  Litigated Reform of Texas Prisons (University of Texas Press, 1989) won the ACJS Outstanding Book Award in 1991, and The Rope, the Chair, and the Needle:  Capital Punishment in Texas, 1923-1990 (University of Texas Press, 1994) won the American Library Association's Outstanding Book Award for 1995.