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Eller College Home > News, Events, and Multimedia > Press Releases > Eller College Dean Plans to Step Down

Press Release

Eller Press Contact

Liz Warren-Pederson
Eller College of Management

Eller College Dean Announces Plans to Step Down

Paul Portney to step down as dean June 30, 2011.

TUCSON, Ariz. – March 15, 2010 – In a faculty meeting last week, UA Eller College of Management dean Paul R. Portney, holder of the Halle Chair in Leadership, announced that he will step down effective June 30, 2011. 

Dean Paul R. PortneySays Portney, “It’s been a terrific honor serving as dean over the last five years, but I’m announcing my departure now so that there is ample time to identify a successor. The chance to work with an outstanding faculty and staff, the best students at the UA, and a very enthusiastic group of alumni and friends of the College has been a great opportunity. And I greatly admire the determination of President Shelton and Provost Hay to keep the UA in the top rank of public universities despite ever-shrinking financial support from the state. I look forward to working with my colleagues over these next 15 months so as to leave the College in the strongest possible place for my successor.”

Over the course of Portney’s tenure, the Eller College of Management developed and launched an Executive MBA program, first in Tucson, then in Phoenix; built a Scottsdale campus to house that program; created an option for undergraduates to take core courses over the summer in China; saw upward movement in rankings for the McGuire Center for Entrepreneurship and the Department of Management Information Systems; and expanded faculty support, including three new endowed chairs, announced in December 2009.

“Paul Portney has been a tremendous asset to the University of Arizona community,” says UA provost Meredith Hay. “Among other contributions, he chaired the UA committee that prepared for the most recent reaccreditation of the UA intercollegiate athletics by the NCAA. His focus and determination have kept the Eller College on a steady track in the face of challenging times for the University.” 

Before joining the Eller College in 2005, Portney spent 33 years with Resources for the Future (RFF), an independent and non-partisan think-tank in Washington, D.C. that specializes in energy and the environment. He served as its president and CEO from 1995 to 2005. He also held visiting faculty positions at University of California, Berkeley and Princeton University.

Since 1999, he has been a member of the board of the Johnson Foundation, one of the charitable arms of the Johnson family of Racine, Wisconsin. In 2006 he joined the board of the Harris Private Bank of Arizona and in 2009 was elected to the board of directors of Empire District Electric, a publicly traded gas and electric utility in Missouri.

UA president Robert Shelton and provost Meredith Hay will determine next steps for Portney’s succession.

The Eller College of Management at the University of Arizona is internationally recognized for pioneering research, innovative curriculum, distinguished faculty, excellence in management information systems, entrepreneurship, and social responsibility. U.S. News & World Report ranks the Eller undergraduate program #11 among public business schools and two of its programs are among the top 20 — Entrepreneurship and MIS. U.S. News & World Report ranks the Eller MBA Full-Time program #48 in the U.S. The College is among the leaders of business schools generating grant funds for research. In addition to a Full-Time MBA program, the Eller College offers the 25th ranked Evening MBA program, the Eller Executive MBA and the Online MBA. The Eller College of Management supports more than 5,800 undergraduate and 750 graduate students on the UA campus in beautiful Tucson, Arizona, and a satellite campus in Phoenix.

Press Contact:
Liz Warren-Pederson, Eller College of Management

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