Debra Walker King

Above: Debra Walker King.

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Associate Provost Selected as American Council on Education Fellow

Debra Walker King, University of Florida associate provost for faculty development, has been selected by the American Council on Education as one of 36 fellows for the 2008-09 academic year.

The fellowship program, established in 1965, is designed to strengthen leadership in American institutions of high education.

Fellows spend their fellowship focusing on an issue of interest to their home university while working with the president and other senior officers of a host academic institution. Fellows also take part in seminars, do extensive reading on their chosen issue and are included at the highest level of decision making at their host institutions.

King has not yet chosen a topic of research or a host institution. She said she will discuss her possible choices with UF’s administration to decide what will most be most mutually beneficial.

“The goal is that what I do during this year will benefit the University of Florida by addressing a topic, question or concern that the university is currently engaged in discussing,” King said.

Her fellowship will last a year, during which time she will move back and forth between UF and her host institution. Her position will not be filled by an interim administrator.

“The individuals selected have demonstrated strong leadership,” said Sharon McDade, director of the fellowship program. “The fellows program will sharpen and enhance their leadership skills and their network and prepare them to address issues of concern to the higher education community.”

Of the approximately 1,500 fellows selected since the program’s inception in 1965, more than 300 have become chief executive officers, and more than 1,100 have become provosts, vice presidents or deans.

King has been a UF faculty member in the department of English since 1994 and an administrator in the provost’s office since 2003. Her book, African Americans and the Culture of Pain, is due for release in April by the University of Virginia Press.
“I’m looking forward to this opportunity because I feel like I will be able to bring back a richness of experience that will benefit both me and the University of Florida,” King said.

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Buffy Lockette

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