July 24, 2020

Dear Members of Our Campus Community,

In my campus memo of March 12, I shared with you the news that after eight years of exceptional and dedicated leadership, Anne and Michael Towbes Graduate Dean Carol Genetti has accepted the position of Vice Provost for Graduate and Postdoctoral Programs at New York University Abu Dhabi in the United Arab Emirates, beginning September 1, 2020.

Following consultation with our Academic Senate Chair, Executive Vice Chancellor, and administrative and faculty colleagues, I am pleased to announce that Professor Leila Rupp has graciously agreed to serve as Interim Anne and Michael Towbes Graduate Dean, effective immediately.

Dr. Rupp is a Professor of Feminist Studies, specializing in women’s movements, sexualities, and transnational women’s history. She has been a distinguished member of our faculty for 18 years. She came to UC Santa Barbara from Ohio State University, where she was their first faculty member in Women’s Studies and Chair of the Department of History. When she joined what was then our Women’s Studies Program in 2002, she worked collaboratively with our colleagues to help enrich the curriculum and develop a graduate program in Feminist Studies. She served as the Chair from 2004 to 2008. Professor Rupp also holds affiliated faculty positions in our Departments of History, Sociology, and Global Studies.

Professor Rupp served with great dedication as Associate Dean of Social Sciences from 2007 to 2016, and as Interim Dean of Social Sciences from 2016 through 2017; in 2018, she returned to her role as Associate Dean. She is the author or coeditor of nine highly regarded books as well as numerous journal articles, essays, and book chapters. From 1996 to 2004, she served as editor of the Journal of Women’s History. She is the recipient of the 2015 Lambda Literary Award for Best Anthology and a Distinguished Teaching Award from our Academic Senate, among many other honors for her teaching, research, and service.

I look forward to making an announcement in the near future regarding the formation of our search advisory committee for the next Dean of the Graduate Division.

Please join me in extending our sincere thanks and best wishes to Dean Genetti as she moves on to her new position. Please also join me in welcoming Professor Rupp to her role as Interim Dean. Her leadership and experience will serve our campus well during this critical time.


Henry T. Yang