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Release: March 29, 2001

John Soloski named University of Georgia journalism dean

IOWA CITY, Iowa — John Soloski, director of the University of Iowa School of Journalism and Mass Communication, has been selected as the next dean of the Grady College of Journalism and Mass Communication at the University of Georgia.

Soloski has been a member of the UI journalism faculty since 1978, the same year he earned his Ph.D. in journalism at the UI. He has served as director of the school since 1996 and has spearheaded the drive for a new building to house the school. He also has worked to expand and enhance connections between the working media and the school, its faculty and students.

"John has been an enormously creative and energetic director for the school, and I hate to see him go," said Linda Maxson, dean of the UI College of Liberal Arts, which houses the journalism school. "But I’m delighted for this opportunity that he has to take his skills to the next level. John has laid a solid foundation for the school to move on to the next plateau. We have the opportunity to continue to build the school with talented faculty and students, a new building in the works, and a major campaign under way. I am confident that we are in a good place for someone new to come in and take the next giant step. I will not let this program falter."

Soloski said it was with mixed emotions that he reached the decision to accept the University of Georgia offer.

"I’ve been here a long time and a lot of me is tied to this university," Soloski said. "It’s not easy to leave." But he said that the opportunity to step into a dean’s position at a highly-rated college of journalism in a major media market was too good to pass up.

He said he was looking forward to working to make Georgia’s journalism college more visible nationally and more connected with its alumni and other professionals. He also said he would like to gain greater attention for the Peabody Awards, a program administered by the college. The Peabody is the top award for broadcast journalism, akin to the Pulitzer Prize for print journalism.

Karen Holbrook, senior vice president for academic affairs and provost at Georgia, praised Soloski’s skills as a leader and scholar. "John Soloski brings a solid academic background in the discipline areas of journalism and mass communication, as well as a sense of innovation, entrepreneurship and interdisciplinarity that will help advance the Grady College and integrate its programs with others on campus," she said.

Soloski said he expected to leave for Georgia sometime this summer, but has not yet determined an exact date. Maxson said she would name an interim director of the school while a search committee works to hire a permanent successor.

More information is available on the University of Georgia Web site at http://www.uga.edu/news/. Note: Clicking on this URL will open a separate browser window.