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Holtzhausen named dean of fine arts and communication

After a thorough national search, President Kenneth Evans has named Derina Holtzhausen as dean of Lamar University’s College of Fine Arts and Communication.

Derina HolzhausenHoltzhausen, who has more than 27 years of teaching, research and service, will succeed Russ Schultz, who served as dean, 2000-2015. 

 She will assume the dean position for the College of Fine Arts and Communication on July 1, 2015.

Holtzhausen holds a Ph.D. in communication science from the University of Johannesburg, an M.A. in Afrikaans literature from University of South Africa and B.A. degrees in Afrikaans-Dutch literature and psychology, German, and Afrikaans-Dutch literature, both from the University of Pretoria. She is currently director of the School of Media and Strategic Communication at Oklahoma State University. 

She joined the faculty of OSU in 2008, and has served there as professor and director for the SMSC.  

With a quarter century of experience as a journalist and strategic communications executive in the complex South African environment, Holtzhausen is a strong proponent of the role communication, media and the arts play in society to promote social justice and discussions on diversity and equality.

Under her leadership, enrollment in the school grew 25 percent to around 790 students on its Stillwater and Tulsa campuses. Student diversity in the school increased under her watch from 15.4 percent in 2008 to 25.6 percent in fall 2014, and faculty diversity in gender and ethnicity grew by 50 percent.  

Prior to joining OSU, Holtzhausen was an associate professor, head of public relations sequence, and graduate director of the School of Mass Communications at University of South Florida, 1997-2008.

Prior to her academic career, she served as head of corporate communication for the South Africa Tourism Board, 1992-1995, and an executive consultant for ABSA Bank, Johannesburg, South Africa, 1995-1997.

An active researcher, her published research includes two books, 23 peer reviewed articles, seven book chapters, and 46 panel and paper presentations. She has been the recipient of numerous grants, awards and scholarships. 
She has served as founding editor for the International Journal of Strategic Communication, 2007-2012, and consulting editor, International Journal of Strategic Communication, since 2012.

She was tapped one of Oklahoma’s Top 20 Women Professors for 2013 by Online Oklahoma Schools, was named a Fellow of the Scripps Howard Journalism Entrepreneurship Institute in 2012, and received a 2012 PRIDE Book Award from the National Communication Association for outstanding contribution to public relations theory for her book Public Relations as Activism: Postmodern Approaches to Theory and Practice.