David Dobkin named dean of faculty
Dobkin, chair of Princeton's Department of Computer Science
for the past nine years and a member of the Princeton faculty
for 22 years, has been named dean of the faculty, effective
He succeeds Joseph
Taylor, dean of the faculty since 1997 and the James McDonnell
Distinguished University Professor of Physics, who returned
to full-time teaching and research.
Dobkin is the new dean of the faculty.
by Denise Applewhite
am very grateful to David Dobkin for his willingness to undertake
the critically important role of dean of the faculty,"
said President Shirley M. Tilghman. "Over the past nine
years, he has led the Department of Computer Science with
great intelligence and vision to become one of the most distinguished
in the world. He has reached out to other departments in the
natural sciences and the social sciences to expand the intellectual
range and impact of the department in the University. He is
highly regarded by his colleagues as a scholar and an innovative
teacher, as well as a man of excellent judgment and great
The dean of the
faculty, who traditionally comes from the ranks of the faculty
at Princeton, has administrative oversight of the departments
and programs of instruction and is responsible for recruiting
and retaining faculty members.
"I am honored
to be named to this position and look forward to working with
an excellent faculty and a wonderful group of administrators,"
Professor Dobkin said.
He joined the faculty
after teaching at Yale University and the University of Arizona.
He earned his bachelor's degree in electrical engineering
and mathematics from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology
and his Ph.D. in applied mathematics from Harvard University.
came to Princeton as a professor of electrical engineering
and computer science, and became a professor of computer science
in 1985 when the department was formed. The department has
undergone a period of rapid growth and change that parallels
the growth and change in the field. Its faculty has nearly
doubled in size, it has developed many new courses and curricular
options, and it moved into a new building in 1989. Computer
science is the only department at Princeton in which students
can earn either an A.B. or a B.S.E.
In 1998, Professor
Dobkin was the first faculty member named to the Phillip Goldman
'86 Professorship in Computer Science. The professorship was
created through a gift from his former student and WebTV Networks
founder Phillip Goldman '86.
A fellow of the
Associa tion of Computing Machinery (ACM), Professor Dobkin
has been awarded a Guggenheim fellowship and a Fulbright grant.
His research focuses on the interface between computational
geometry and computer graphics. He has been an adviser and
a visiting researcher at companies such as Bell Labs, AT&T
Research and Xerox. He also has served on the executive committee
of the National Science Foundation's Center for Discrete Mathematics
and Theoretical Computer Science as well as the foundation's
Geometry Center. The author of numerous papers, Professor
Dobkin is a member of the editorial boards of several professional
In addition to
instructing classes in computer science, Professor Dobkin
has taught a freshman seminar with sociologist Paul DiMaggio
on "Sex, Money and Rock and Roll: Information Technology
and Society." The course examines the social issues associated
with information technology, focusing on fields such as computer
science, economics, law, philosophy, political science, and
Last year, Professor
Dobkin served on the provost's Target-of- Opportunity Search
Committee, which seeks candidates for the faculty who are
outstanding creative artists, would further diversify the
faculty, or are scholars of extraordinary attainment. He has
twice (in academic years 1996-97 and 2000-01) served as an
elected member of the Faculty Advisory Committee on Appointments
and Advancements, which oversees all faculty appointments
and promotions. He also was on the search committee for the
vice president for information technology and was chief information
officer in academic year 2000-01.
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