MemorandumApril 19, 2022
- AU Community
- Peter Starr, Provost and Chief Academic Officer
- Dean of the College of Arts and Sciences
It gives me great pleasure to announce that Linda Aldoory will join American University as our new dean of the College of Arts and Sciences following a thorough national search. A distinguished scholar, dedicated teacher, and experienced administrator, Dr. Aldoory comes to AU after serving as associate dean for faculty affairs and research, professor of communication, and director of the Center for Humanities Research in the College of Arts and Humanities at the University of Maryland, College Park. She will begin her new position on July 1, 2022.
Dr. Aldoory’s past leadership roles at the UMD College of Arts and Humanities include associate dean for research and programming, diversity officer and equity administrator, associate chair of the Department of Communication, and founder and director of the Center for Health Risk and Communication. She has also served as endowed chair and director of the Herschel S. Horowitz Center for Health Literacy in the School of Public Health. Her faculty appointment at AU will be as professor of health studies.
Dr. Aldoory’s work addresses social justice and health equity, as well as how diversity and inclusion can improve communication professions. Her recent book, The Future of Feminism in Public Relations and Strategic Communication, co-authored with Elizabeth Toth, won the 2021 PRIDE Outstanding Book Award from the Public Relations Division of the National Communication Association. Among her other scholarly achievements are dozens of journal articles, book chapters, commissioned reports, and a co-edited book. She is also former editor of the Journal of Public Relations Research and president-elect of the Association for Education in Journalism and Mass Communication.
A national expert in the development and evaluation of public health campaigns and health literacy programs, Dr. Aldoory has consulted for federal agencies including the US Food and Drug Administration, US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and US Department of Agriculture. Her community-based health literacy initiatives have been recognized with the Outstanding Rural Health Program Award by the Maryland Rural Health Conference, and the Good Samaritan Award by the Capitol Heights Police Department. She was also honored as a Health Literacy Hero by the Institute for Healthcare Advancement for her applied health literacy research.
Prior to her career in academia, Dr. Aldoory held several public relations positions working on mental health and maternal health projects with The Bronx Perinatal Consortium, Hill and Knowlton, Inc., and the American Psychiatric Association. She received her PhD in mass communication from Syracuse University, an MA in journalism from the University of Texas at Austin, and a bachelor’s degree in psychology from The George Washington University.
It is an especially exciting moment for Dr. Aldoory to join the CAS community. The college recently opened the 125,000-square-foot Hall of Science, a hub for cutting-edge teaching and research. It received the largest externally funded award in AU’s history, a $15 million, five-year National Science Foundation grant to study food waste. CAS faculty are publishing critically acclaimed books, receiving prestigious grants and awards, and appearing as experts across national media. The American University Museum holds more than 17,000 works in its permanent collection and has four new spring exhibitions on display to the public. On stage, student actors, musicians, and dancers have returned to perform in front of live audiences.
I am deeply grateful to Max Paul Friedman for his extraordinary contributions as interim dean since July 2020. I have appreciated the active engagement of CAS faculty, staff, and students throughout the search process. Many thanks in particular to the members of the search committee, led by chair David Haaga, for their commitment and hard work in recruiting this outstanding new dean for CAS.
Please join me in welcoming Linda to American University!