Arts & Sciences dean to retire

Friday, June 03, 2011

Tom Benediktson will serve as dean until May 31, 2013.

Tom BenediktsonTom Benediktson, dean of the Henry Kendall College of Arts and Sciences at The University of Tulsa, announced Friday that he plans to retire in 2013.

Benediktson, who has held the post since 2003, has signed a faculty phased retirement agreement that calls for his service as dean until May 31, 2013. The university plans to conduct a search in the 2012-13 academic year to fill the vacant position.

Benediktson joined the TU faculty in 1982 as an assistant professor of classics and comparative literature and later was named an associate professor in 1988 and a full professor in 1999. He was named associate dean for the college in 1997, serving in that capacity until he was named dean six years later.

TU President Steadman Upham praised Benediktson’s many years of service to the university.

“Tom’s steady leadership has allowed the Henry Kendall College of Arts and Sciences to continue to provide the important foundation for our liberal arts-based Tulsa Curriculum, while also working closely with college’s faculty and staff to strategically develop and expand its academic programs as part of a comprehensive teaching and research institution,” Upham said.

In a letter to college faculty and staff, Benediktson said he originally thought he would serve as dean for three to five years and was surprised by the length of his service. He thanked faculty and staff members for their assistance and praised them for their talent.

Benediktson also said the college is in better financial shape today than it has been in the history of TU, and he expects the progress to continue in the coming years.

"This is a much better college than it was in 1982 when I came here, “ he said. “Watching it develop has been an experience I shall not forget.”

Benediktson earned both a bachelor’s and a master’s degree in Rhetoric from The University of California, Berkeley, in 1972 and 1974, respectively. He went on to receive a master’s degree and a doctorate in Classics at The University of Texas at Austin in 1977 and 1982, respectively.

He currently teaches courses in Greek and Latin languages and literatures at TU, as well as in mythology and women in the ancient world. In the Honors Program, he teaches Epic and Plato courses for first-semester freshmen, and his current research is on Homer’s Iliad and its relationship to geometric pottery of the 8th century B.C.

After retirement, Benediktson and his wife, Caroline, will move closer to their children who currently live in Chicago and Seattle.


Mona Chamberlin