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Insider Named Dean of Carnegie Mellon's Tepper School of Business

Carnegie Mellon University's Tepper School of Business announced that a popular professor, Robert Dammon, will be its next dean.

The Tepper School, which has produced nine Nobel Prize winners, came in at No. 18 on U.S. News & World Report’s list of the nation’s best graduate business schools for 2012.

Dammon has spent almost his entire career at Tepper, joining the faculty in 1984 after earning his Ph.D. from the University of Wisconsin, Madison, where he also earned his MBA in 1980. He became associate dean for education in 2008.

The previous dean, Kenneth Dunn, stepped down after nine years in the post on Dec. 31, saying he needed to spend more time with his family in New York.

Carnegie Mellon University Provost and executive Vice President Mark S. Kamlet, who has been serving as acting dean, lavished praise on Dammon.

Business

“Our expectation of a leader for the school's academic and research priorities is extremely high, and Bob's experience is unmatched,”  Kamlet said in a university press release. "He is an outstanding researcher, exceptional teacher and skillful administrator, and he brings a clear understanding of the complexities and opportunities in management education today.”

But Dammon told the Wall Street Journal that he initially wasn’t sure he wanted the job, with all of its responsibilities. “I already don't get much sleep,” he noted.

The only three-time winner of the Tepper School's George Leland Bach Teaching Award, Dammon says he hopes to continue teaching after taking on the dean’s role, as a way to stay connected with the students. He estimates that he knows 20-25% of the school’s alumni from the classroom, an asset in strengthening community ties for the school, which he says has a relatively small endowment.

The school is in the middle of a curriculum review, but Dammon told the WSJ that he didn’t plan to reinvent its brand.  “We really want to be known for our rigorous academic approach, as well as our focus on analytical decision making,” he said.

“The school's intellectual property is our most valuable asset, and we are part of a university that has prestigious programs in computer engineering and the fine arts, which is unique. I want to look for opportunities to develop new degree programs that can't be duplicated by other institutions.”

Dammon takes his place as dean May 1.  

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