Dean's Office Reorganization

As we look toward the future and UB’s top 25 ambitions, the College is reorganizing the Dean’s Office structure in an effort to better support departments, programs, centers and institutes and to improve and streamline processes and procedures.

Goals of the reorganization:

  • Emphasize a culture of collaboration and not competition across sectors and among departments
  • Respond to recommendations of the PhD Excellence Committees to reduce investment in the Dean’s Office
  • Create greater capacity for strategic thinking and to approach work proactively rather than reactively
  • Improve service delivery for departments
  • Create more space for the Dean to engage with alumni and donors to raise philanthropic dollars
  • Reduce the duplication effect of the current structure and clarify reporting lines within and outside the structure  

New Structure

Dean's Office Reorganization chart: Dean > Academic Affairs, Research, Humanities and Arts, Natural Sciences and Mathematics, Social Sciences.
  • Associate Dean for Social Sciences: Sean Bennett, Department of Geography
  • Senior Associate Dean for Research: Jerry Koudelka, Department of Biological Sciences 
  • Associate Dean for Academic Affairs: Peter Pfordresher, Department of Psychology
  • Associate Dean for Natural Sciences and Mathematics: Kris Tjaden, Department of Communicative Disorders and Sciences 
  • Associate Dean for Arts and Humanities: Ewa Ziarek, Department of Comparative Literature

Meet the Associate Deans

Sean Bennett Jerry Koudelka Peter Pfordresher Kris Tjaden Ewa Ziarek

Associate Dean for Academic Affairs

Peter Pfordresher, Department of Psychology

Gerald Koudelka.

The Associate Dean for Academic Affairs is the primary designee for the Dean of the College in matters involving the administration, operation and oversight of graduate and undergraduate education in the College. The position is charged with representing the interests of the College in all discussions related to the operation of the university curriculum. The Associate Dean for Academic Affairs is also responsible for ensuring that all departments comply with College, University and SUNY-level academic policies, and that course schedules are optimized to ensure student success and fiscal responsibility. This position works closely with the Sector Associate Deans and the UB Dean of Undergraduate Education to ensure the strategic management of UB’s general education program, the UB Curriculum.

Sector Administrative Directors

The Sector Administrative Directors, a position developed as part of the College’s reorganization, are vital administrative support roles for each sector. The administrative directors will work closely with the Associate Deans in their respective sector as a strategic partner and advisor. The Sector Administrative Director will assume responsibility for key administration functions and management of processes for the sector. 

  • Karen Sausner, sector administrative director, arts and humanities
    Karen will work with Ewa Ziarek.
  • Carol Ciaciuch, sector administrative director for social sciences
    Carol will partner with Sean Bennett.
  • Kelly Thumansector administrative director, natural sciences and mathematics
    Kelly will collaborate with Kris Tjaden.

Academic Portfolio by Sector

Faculty Advisory Committee

Representing the range of disciplines from across the College, a committee of full professors met with candidates for the five associate dean positions and served as advisors to the dean.

  • Susan Cahn, Department of History
  • Cecil Foster, Department of Africana and American Studies
  • Mark Frank, Department of Communication
  • Paul Gollnick, Department of Biological Sciences
  • Lynne Koscielniak, Department of Theatre and Dance
  • Jennifer Read, Department of Psychology