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Robert Ray named associate dean of academic student affairs at CALS

Robert O. Ray, University of Wisconsin-Madison professor of forest ecology and management, has been named associate dean of academic student affairs at the UW-Madison College of Agricultural and Life Sciences.

In his new position Ray will have overall responsibility for the College”s undergraduate instruction, student recruiting and career services, Farm and Industry Short Course and alumni programs.

Ray has been with the University since 1976 and has spent the last seven as assistant dean in the academic student affairs office.

“Bob Ray brings to this position a thorough understanding of the College’s undergraduate programs that will help guide our ongoing efforts to enhance our students’ experiences,” says CALS Dean Molly Jahn, who appointed Ray to the post. “He has bold and innovative goals and vision for one of our College”s most important functions. I look forward to helping him move these ideas forward.”

Ray has been with the forest ecology and management department since 1997. He joined the faculty thirty years ago as an assistant professor in the former department of continuing and vocational education (CAVE), and later served as that department”s chairperson. He has a joint appointment in the university”s Education Leadership and Policy Analysis program, which was created when the CAVE department was discontinued.

A Georgia native, Ray received his bachelor”s and master”s degrees from the University of Georgia in Athens before earning a doctorate from the University of Maryland in College Park. Much of his research has focused on adult education and the role of recreation and leisure activities in the quality of life of older adults. More recently, he has studied the implications of human behavior on natural resources management.

Ray replaces Richard Barrows, who retired in May after serving 13 years as associate dean and 34 years on the College”s faculty.