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DeHart named interim chair of Appalachian’s Department of Communication

BOONE—Dr. Jean DeHart has been named interim chair of the Department of Communication at Appalachian State University effective Jan. 1, 2014. DeHart replaces Dr. Janice Pope, who will be returning to the faculty after serving as interim chair from 2007-09 and chair from 2009-13.

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Pope was instrumental in many of the department’s milestones and successes, including the realization of the Beasley Media Complex, which opened in 2013.

“Dr. Pope has done a tremendous job as chair and I have enjoyed working with her in that capacity,” said Dr. Glenda Treadaway, dean of the College of Fine and Applied Arts, in which the department is based. “Her return to the classroom full time will be a great benefit for the students of the department.” Pope will teach public relations courses.

DeHart joined the Department of Communication faculty in 1995. Her primary teaching is in the communication studies area, including courses in political communication, political humor, speechwriting and interpersonal communication.

DeHart completed a B.A. degree with majors in communication and political science at James Madison University, an M.A. degree in speech and theatre at the University of Tennessee, and a Ph.D. in speech communication at the University of Georgia. She is a Certified Empowerment Coach and currently serves as second vice president of the Southern States Communication Association.

“I look forward to serving my department in this leadership role as we work through a period of transition not only at the department level, but university wide,” DeHart said. “I join the entire faculty in thanking Dr. Pope for her years of service as chair.”

“Dr. DeHart has the necessary skills and drive to balance the often competing natures of faculty and administrative work. I am confident that she will serve her department and our college well during this time of transition,” Treadaway said.