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Buddy James named founding director for CSUEB’s new School of Arts & Media


Buddy James

  • July 29, 2013

Buddy James, a member of the Cal State East Bay music faculty since 2006, has been named founding director of the university's new School of Arts & Media, which is scheduled to begin operations at some point during the 2013-2014 academic year.

CSUEB’s College of Letters, Arts, and Social Sciences (CLASS) is creating the new school, recently approved by CSUEB President Leroy M. Morishita, to further enhance and strengthen the university’s artistic and communication curriculums.  The School of Arts & Media will comprise the departments of Art, Communication, Music, Theatre and Dance, as well as the Multimedia Graduate Program.

“This is a very exciting moment for the campus and for the departments who will be a part of the School of Arts & Media,” said Kathleen Rountree, CLASS dean. “Dr. Buddy James is a respected professor, manager, and leader who has shown the ability to build our choral program in quality and size, while creating strong connections with the local and regional community.

“He will be a strong, articulate leader and spokesperson for the arts and media programs, and I look forward to the work that he and the department chairs and faculty will accomplish to build an exciting future for these programs,” Rountree added.

She said that James, a resident of Palo Alto, will start his new assignment of organizing the school in September. He is an associate professor of music and CSUEB’s director of choral and vocal activities and coordinator of vocal music education. Before coming to the university, James taught at the University of Southern California, UC Berkeley, UC Irvine and Whittier College.

“His most important immediate charge will be to set a vision for the School of Art & Media that encourages the development of a distinctive program that is reflective of our region, and poised to be a leader in the future,” Rountree said.

James is thrilled to be chosen to direct the new school.

"We now have a stability and strength of leadership in the dean's office of the College of Letters, Arts and Social Sciences that makes this the perfect time to start the School of Arts & Media, and I am honored to be appointed founding director,” he said. “Our faculty is second to none, and the opportunities for creativity and collaboration that will be made possible by the new school should usher us into a new era of excellence."

Jim Houpis, provost and vice president of academic affairs, noted that Cal State East Bay has a tradition for strong arts and media programs.

“By creating the School of Arts & Media, we hope not only to attract the best and brightest students (in those disciplines), but also provide a home for innovative faculty and a forward-thinking curriculum that serves our region and the nation,” said Houpis.

The appointment of Buddy James as director, according to the dean, “is one of the last steps in planning for the launch of the school.”

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