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New Leadership at the Federal Cultural Agencies

posted by September 16, 2001

In a brief announcement on July 23, 2001, the White House formally nominated Bruce Cole, distinguished professor of fine arts and professor of comparative literature at the Hope School of Fine Arts at Indiana University in Bloomington, to chair the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH). Arrangements for the transition from the chairmanship of William Ferris to Cole are under development, which means Cole will continue to teach during the fall semester at Indiana University. Ferris, whose four-year term expires in November, will continue as Chair until Cole takes over some time in December.

Michael Hammond, currently dean of the Shepherd School of Music at Rice University, was selected by President George W. Bush in mid-September 2001 to chair the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA). Bill Ivey, current chair of the NEA, is due to leave at the end of September.

On July 12, 2001, the Senate confirmed Robert Martin to serve as director of the Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS). Martin, who holds a PhD in philosophy and library science from the University of North Carolina in Chapel Hill, comes to the IMLS from Texas Woman’s University in Denton.

In July of this year, CAA was one of twenty-one education-related organizations from around the world that joined the Network for Education and Academic Rights (NEAR). NEAR posts information on its website,, concerning human rights in education and breaches of academic freedoms. It also sends alerts to member organizations so that they in turn can inform their respective members. CAA’s participation in NEAR is in keeping with its long-standing commitment to the support of academic freedom. In 1970, CAA adopted the American Association of University Professors’ 1940 Statement of Principles on Academic Freedom and Tenure with 1970 Interpretive Comments, which promotes public understanding and support of academic freedom and tenure and agreement upon procedures to assure these protections in colleges and universities.

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The College Art Association supports all practitioners and interpreters of visual art and culture, including artists and scholars, who join together to cultivate the ongoing understanding of art as a fundamental form of human expression. Representing its members’ professional needs, CAA is committed to the highest professional and ethical standards of scholarship, creativity, connoisseurship, criticism, and teaching.