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University of Iowa News Release


March 13, 2012

Tennessee vice provost Gardial named to lead Tippie College of Business

Sarah Gardial, vice provost of the University of Tennessee, Knoxville, has been named the first woman dean of the University of Iowa's Henry B. Tippie College of Business, effective July 1.

Gardial, 54, joined the marketing faculty of the University of Tennessee's College of Business Administration in 1986 and later served as assistant dean for the full-time MBA program and associate dean for academic programs. She has served as the university's vice provost for faculty affairs since 2008, overseen faculty recruitment and development, and participated on the planning and implementation teams for the university's strategic plan.

Gardial, a native of Hot Springs, Ark., earned her undergraduate and MBA degrees from the University of Arkansas and her doctorate in 1986 from the University of Houston. She will replace retiring dean William "Curt" Hunter, the first African-American dean of the Tippie College.

"The Tippie College of Business is a highly regarded school and I am very proud to have been selected to lead its next chapter," says Gardial. "The college has outstanding faculty, researchers, and students and I look forward to working with them to develop a plan and a vision that builds on its tradition of excellence and achievement."

"I was very impressed with the clarity of Dr. Gardial's vision for the Tippie College of Business, as well as by her dynamic and extraordinary enthusiasm for leadership," says P. Barry Butler, UI executive vice president and provost, who made the appointment, subject to approval by the Board of Regents, State of Iowa. "I am confident she will advance the college's multi-dimensional mission of outstanding teaching and scholarship during her tenure as dean."

"Dr. Gardial is an accomplished administrator with an impressive record of achievement," says Hunter. "Her diverse experiences should serve the Tippie College well in its efforts to develop exceptional business and community leaders."

Gardial was one of five finalists interviewed on the UI campus in January and February by a search committee chaired by Gail Agrawal, dean of the College of Law.

"The committee was pleased by the high quality of the candidates who were interested in leading the Tippie College of Business as its next dean," says Agrawal. "The strength of the pool is a testament to the achievements of the faculty, staff, and students at the Tippie College and to the leadership of Dean Hunter. Dr. Gardial distinguished herself throughout the interview process, exhibiting a deep understanding of business education coupled with strong leadership and communication skills."

"The Tippie College of Business has an outstanding record of educating Iowa's future business leaders for more than 150 years and I'm confident Sarah Gardial will continue that tradition," says Sally Mason, University of Iowa president. "Iowans will be impressed by her vision for the Tippie College and her drive to move the institution forward."

Gardial says she was drawn to the Tippie College position not only because of the college's tradition of excellence but because of her commitment to public higher education.

"I'm a product of public institutions and I have a great fondness in my heart for them," she says. "They provide the students who are our future leaders and perform the research that is needed to keep the country strong. My DNA is in public education."

Gardial has received numerous awards for her teaching and scholarship while at Tennessee and is co-author of the book Know your Customer: New Perspectives on Customer Value and Customer Satisfaction, published in 1996 by Blackwell Publishing. Her academic research area is customer value and satisfaction. A frequent public speaker, she has served as a consultant to such companies as Procter and Gamble, Frito-Lay, and TRW. She is the current president of the MBA Roundtable Board of Directors and was past chair for the Graduate Management Admissions Council Annual Conference.

Gardial has a husband, Jeffrey Gleeson, as well as daughters, Meredith, a recent graduate of Clemson University, and Julia, an undergraduate at the University of Alabama.

Her salary will be $380,000.

STORY SOURCE: University of Iowa News Service, 300 Plaza Centre One, Iowa City, Iowa 52242-2500

MEDIA CONTACT: Tom Snee, 319-384-0010 (office), 319-541-8434 (cell),