June 15, 2005


Dear Colleagues:

In my campus memo last week, I shared with you the news that College of Creative Studies Provost William Ashby will be retiring after 35 years of extraordinary leadership and service to CCS and our university.

Upon the recommendation of EVC Gene Lucas, and in consultation with campus colleagues, the title of this position is being changed from Provost to Dean to align it with the rest of the campus, and I am pleased to announce that Professor Bruce Tiffney has graciously agreed to serve as the Acting Dean of our College of Creative Studies, effective July 1, 2005, until such a time as the new Dean is in place.

Professor Tiffney joined our Geological Sciences faculty in 1986, and has been a member of our College of Creative Studies with an emphasis in Biology for ten years. He holds an A.B. cum laude in geology from Boston University, and a Ph.D. in botany from Harvard University. Prior to coming to UC Santa Barbara, he was a member of the Biology faculty at Yale University, and Associate Curator at the Yale Peabody Museum of Natural History.

Professor Tiffney has a distinguished record of teaching, research, and university service. He was chair of the CCS Executive Committee for six years, and has served on numerous Academic Senate and Systemwide committees. As an ardent advocate for undergraduate research, he has personally mentored 12 undergraduate research students in the last decade. Professor Tiffney was honored with the UC Santa Barbara Academic Senate Distinguished Teaching Award in 1998.

His research is broadly focused on the evolution of terrestrial plants. A Fellow of the Geological Society of America, he is a recognized expert on the fossil record of flowering plants as revealed by their fruits and seeds. He has authored more than 80 professional papers, including seminal works in the field of plant phylogeography. With colleagues at Harvard and Cornell, he wrote the first summation of the history of land plant diversity over the past 460 million years, a project now being revisited with a significantly larger database under the aegis of our National Center for Ecological Analysis and Synthesis.

Please join me in thanking Professor Tiffney for his dedication to our campus and his willingness to serve in this important role.


Henry T. Yang