Your Colleagues

Biehl named ACE fellow


Published November 13, 2020

“The ACE Fellows Program is unique in its ability to transform the lives and enrich the careers of its participants. ”
Ted Mitchell, president
American Council on Education
headshot of Peter Biehl.

Peter Biehl

UB faculty member Peter F. Biehl has been selected as a fellow of the American Council on Education (ACE), an initiative that identifies and prepares faculty, staff and administrators for senior positions in college and university leadership.

Biehl, a professor of anthropology who just completed a term as associate dean for international education and enrollment in the College of Arts and Sciences, is among the fellows selected for 2020-21. The fellowship program combines retreats, interactive learning opportunities, visits to campuses and other higher education-related organizations, and a placement at another higher education institution to condense years of on-the-job experience and skills development into a single year.

During their placements at host institutions, which will take place during the 2021-22 academic year due to the coronavirus pandemic, fellows will observe and work with the president and other senior officers at the institution, attend decision-making meetings, and focus on issues of interest. Biehl says he’ll learn the name of his host institution in March or April. In the meantime, he’s taking part in the ACE virtual leadership program.

And as part of their ACE program, fellows also work on projects for their home institution, with the goal of implementing their findings upon completion of their fellowship placement. Biehl is working with Robert Granfield, vice provost for faculty affairs, and his staff on developing protocols and institutional practices for enhancing the national and international recognition of UB’s faculty. The project is titled Boosting Institutional Ranking and Faculty Awards: Establishing Assessment Criteria and Best Practices for Enhancing the Post-COVID 19 Inclusive Professoriate.

Biehl says his project focuses on faculty awards and rankings, and how universities can best improve their results for both. “I am interested in understanding the metrics, establishing best practices, and outlining assessment criteria and ways for improving faculty achievement and recognition, with a particular focus on underrepresented minorities and women,” he says. 

Since its inception in 1965, the ACE Fellows Program has identified and prepared more than 2,000 faculty, staff and administrators for senior positions in college and university leadership. More than 80% of those fellows have gone on to serve as chief executive officers, chief academic officers, other cabinet-level positions and deans following their fellowship.

“The ACE Fellows Program is unique in its ability to transform the lives and enrich the careers of its participants,” says ACE President Ted Mitchell. “After an intensive experience working with accomplished higher education leaders, the fellows will return to their home campuses prepared to address the challenges of tomorrow.”

Biehl, a former chair of the UB Department of Anthropology, is director of the university’s Institute for European and Mediterranean Archaeology, the Marian E. White Anthropology Research Museum and the Critical Museum Studies MA Program, as well as chair of the Council on International Studies and Programs.

He has chaired the Provost’s Task Force for Inclusion and Engagement of International Students, the Budget and Resources Committee of the General Education Program and the Campus-Wide Course Evaluations Committee. He is a recipient of the Distinguished Postdoc Mentor Award of the Graduate School and the SUNY Chancellor’s Award for Internationalization.

Biehl is a fellow of the Society of Antiquaries of London and the German Archaeological Institute, and chair of the Oscar Montelius Foundation of the European Association of Archaeologists. He has received fellowships from the Research Center for Anatolian Civilizations, German Academic Exchange (DAAD) and the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation, has taught at universities in Halle, Freiburg, Cambridge and Paris, and directed excavations in Germany and Turkey.

His research interests include climate change in the past and present, material culture, museums and heritage. He is the author or co-author of 10 books and more than 120 articles, book chapters and exhibitions.