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2007.08.07 > For Immediate Release
contact: Tim Kaldahl - University Relations
phone: 402.554.3502 - email: tkaldahl@mail.unomaha.edu

Tom Bragg to Step Down from UNO Administrative Positions

Omaha - The University of Nebraska at Omaha announced today that Tom Bragg, associate vice chancellor for research and dean of graduate studies, will return to full-time teaching and research with a special focus on his efforts to establish an Omaha-area environmental teaching and research facility at the university’s Allwine Prairie Preserve.  His change in focus will begin at the start of the academic year this fall. 

“The university greatly appreciates Dr. Bragg’s exceptional contributions to the maintenance and expansion of UNO research efforts—especially the focus on external grants funding as well as administering the Office of Graduate Studies,” said UNO Chancellor John Christensen.

Dr. Bragg has served as associate vice chancellor for research and dean of graduate studies for four years while also maintaining his outstanding teaching and research record, said Sheri Rogers, UNO interim senior vice chancellor for academic and student affairs.  His work at Allwine Prairie has been both important and innovative.  The 160-acre prairie is located near 144th and State Streets.

“Dr. Bragg has worked for more than 30 years on the Allwine project, and he recently secured a $1 million grant from the Nebraska Environmental Trust to acquire more than 100 additional acres,” Rogers said.

While Dr. Bragg’s appointments as both associate vice chancellor for research and graduate dean had been a three-fourths time position, the university will be separating the roles to provide more institutional support for campus-wide research efforts.  For 2007-08, an interim associate vice chancellor for research will be named in early August.   A campus committee currently is reviewing internal applications for the interim position.  A national search will be conducted for the permanent position after the new senior vice chancellor for Academic and Student Affairs is selected. 

“Having a full-time associate vice chancellor for research is an important step for UNO,” said Mary Laura Farnham, director of UNO sponsored programs and research.  “It shows the university’s dedication to its mission of academic excellence and how important research and creativity is to the institution.”

The administrative responsibilities for the Office of Graduate Studies will be combined with the existing associate vice chancellor for academic affairs position held by Deborah Smith-Howell. At the start of the academic year, her title will also include dean of graduate studies.

"The pairing of the graduate studies with Dr. Smith-Howell's current responsibilities in academic affairs is a logical one," Rogers said.  "There are many points of connection and crossover.”

UNO has more than 2,500 graduate students.

“Chancellor Christensen and I greatly appreciate the efforts of everyone in Academic and Student Affairs, Sponsored Programs and Research, and Graduate Studies--including the faculty who have stepped forward to assist Academic and Student Affairs as faculty-in-residence-- as we work together through another year of transition as we search for a senior vice chancellor for Academic and Student Affairs and continue with a vacant associate vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs position,” Rogers said.  

For more information, call (402) 554-3502.

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