Janet Broughton to serve as acting L&S executive dean for a year

Mark Richards' sabbatical also leads to a new divisional dean in mathematics and physical sciences

| 21 January 2009

Janet BroughtonJanet Broughton (Steve McConnell photo)

At the start of the new year, Arts and Humanities Dean Janet Broughton assumed the duties of acting executive dean of the College of Letters and Science, filling in while Mark Richards, the head of L&S, takes a one-year sabbatical. A professor of philosophy, Broughton has served as dean of the L&S Division of Arts and Humanities since 2006.

"The college has been dear to my heart ever since I came to Berkeley 30 years ago," Broughton said. "It's the home of Cal's liberal-arts education, and it's where some of the world's most creative minds pursue fundamental questions about human life and the world around us. I'm honored to serve the college as its acting executive dean during Dean Richards' research leave."

Broughton is a scholar of the history of modern philosophy, with a particular interest in the 17th and 18th centuries. She is the author of Descartes' Method of Doubt and is currently working on the philosophy of David Hume. She earned her B.A. from UC Davis and her Ph.D. from Princeton. After teaching for three years at Harvard, she joined Berkeley's philosophy department in 1979.

Meanwhile, leadership of the L&S Division of Mathematical and Physical Sciences, formerly held by Richards as well, will pass to Deborah Nolan, a professor of statistics who until recently served as associate dean of the division. Nolan, who has a special interest in undergraduate education, has developed and operated programs to encourage talented undergraduate women to pursue advanced degrees in mathematical sciences.