CALS Appoints Four New Associate Deans
The UA College of Agriculture and Life Sciences has installed its new leadership group.

Jeff Harrison
Feb. 23, 2012

Four new associate deans have been appointed in the University of Arizona College of Agriculture and Life Sciences, or CALS. 

Professor Joy Winzerling is the new Bart Cardon Associate Dean for Academic Programs and Career Development. Currently professor and head of the department of nutritional sciences, Winzerling also is a registered dietitian.

She graduated with a degree in biological science and a doctorate in nutritional sciences from the UA and completed postdoctoral training in the department of biochemistry and molecular biophysics and the Arizona Research Laboratories. Her cross-disciplinary research spans the fields of entomology and human nutrition.

Winzerling has extensive teaching, mentoring and advising experience at the UA, beginning in 1980 in nutritional sciences. Under her leadership over the past four years, the nutritional sciences department launched a new distance-education program. As a former co-chair of a complex graduate program, Winzerling has a first-hand understanding of the issues involved in offering and sustaining academic degree programs.

She will work with CALS unit heads and others in the college and across campus to strengthen and enhance career-oriented undergraduate and graduate education for all students in CALS. 

Winzerling replaces David Cox, who retired in 2011 after working at the UA for more than 27 years, the last 16 of them as associate dean for academic programs, and Elaine Marchello, who played a critical role as interim associate dean in the transition between Cox's retirement and Winzerling's appointment.

The new associate dean for research and director of the Arizona Agricultural Experiment Station is professor Ron Allen, a veteran animal scientist who has taught and conducted research at Iowa State University, Michigan State University, and since 1980, the UA. Allen currently is the department head, the Roy and Phyllis Hislop Chair and professor in the animal sciences department.

The focus of his research for nearly 30 years has been the growth and repair of skeletal muscle in domestic animals and humans. Not only has Allen contributed to Arizona's largest agricultural sector, his research also has been important for human health in the field of muscular dystrophy and in stem cell biology. His work in animal growth is helping the cattle industry develop new methods to increase food production at lower costs while enhancing animal health.

Allen will promote research areas consistent with primary needs of the state, including fundamental basic research and translational and applied research. He notes that value comes in the form of quality education and workforce development; research that facilitates economic development; and an independent, objective source of science-based information.

Allen replaces Colin Kaltenbach, who served as the CALS associate dean and director of the Arizona Experiment Station for 22 years before retiring in 2011.

Professor Jeff Silvertooth is the new associate dean for economic development and director of Arizona Cooperative Extension. His background includes direct and extensive experience in cooperative extension, research, instruction, administration and service.

Arriving at the UA in 1987 with a doctorate in soil science/soil fertility from Oklahoma State, Silvertooth worked as an extension agronomist in cotton for 14 years, eventually becoming a professor in the department of plant sciences and the department of soil, water and environmental science.

Since 2000, Silvertooth has been head of the department of soil, water and environmental science, where he has continued to teach and conduct research in crop production systems and management strategies. His frequent work with international programs, particularly in Mexico, has had a direct connection to his applied research and extension education program.

He believes that in the future the demand will increase for strong research, extension and outreach programs that work with the public and business sectors in an effective partnership. He will oversee an extensive team that has a presence in every county in the state.

Silvertooth replaces Jim Christenson, CALS cooperative extension director for 22 years, and Kirk Astroth, interim director, who not only carried two jobs in cooperative extension between Christenson's retirement and Silvertooth's appointment, but also led extension on some major new initiatives. 

Professor Soyeon Shim is the new associate dean for strategic initiatives, a newly created position she will hold while continuing as director of the Norton School of Family and Consumer Sciences and professor of retailing and consumer sciences.

This new position was created to take advantage of Shim's strategic leadership and management abilities as well as her business skills, at a time when the college is facing significant budgetary constraints requiring some elements of restructuring and innovative directions. Her expertise also is invaluable as CALS focuses on becoming a more engaged economic engine for the state.

Since becoming division chair of retailing and consumer sciences at the Norton School in 1992 and then director of the Norton School in 2000, Shim has headed up many strategic initiatives that led to reshaping the Norton School as one of the most innovative programs in the nation.

She has worked closely with faculty and staff, alumni and the school's business and community partners, learning lessons in building financial partnerships, launching several new institutes and centers and constructing the new McClelland Park building through a $25 million campaign.

In her additional role, she will work closely with the college leadership team in developing a vision for the 21st century, spearhead the college's strategic plan process and lead special projects as assigned by CALS Dean Shane Burgess.

All four associate deans began Feb. 20 and will serve on the CALS Executive Council with Burgess.

"Every one of these new associate deans is committed to serving the faculty and students of the college," Burgess said. "I am also specially tasking them not only to manage in each of their areas, but also to lead us all in defining how we will live within our budget and, at the same time, serve the people of Arizona by delivering on our mission to develop our state's people and our economy."


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Shane Burgess

College of Agriculture and Life Sciences