Romzek to return to full-time scholarship; new senior vice provost for academic affairs sought

Provost Jeffrey Vitter has announced he will begin an internal search for senior vice provost for academic affairs.

The successful candidate will replace Barbara Romzek, who will return to teaching and research at the end of August. Romzek was named interim vice provost by then-Interim Provost Danny Anderson in August 2009. Vitter promoted her to interim senior vice provost in fall 2010.

Barbara Romzek

“Barbara has been an invaluable part of the university’s efforts to enhance the academic experience of our students. I was grateful that when I arrived last July she agreed to stay an additional year. She has been an important bridge during a time of transition for the university, including serving as project manager for the strategic planning process,” Vitter said.

The vice provost for academic affairs is responsible for policy development, undergraduate and graduate program development, academic program review, coordination of the curriculum, undergraduate and graduate assessment and fostering the involvement of undergraduates in service learning, research and international education. In addition, the role involves liaison with Board of Regents and community colleges regarding academic programming.

Romzek is the former chair of the Department of Public Administration and former associate dean for the social sciences in the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences. She served as interim dean of the College in 2005-06.

Romzek is recognized nationally as an expert in public management and accountability with particular emphases on government reform, contracting and network service delivery. Her work has encompassed a variety of work settings, including federal agencies such as NASA, Congress and the U.S. Air Force, as well as state agencies, local governments and nonprofits. She has published three books and numerous articles in social science journals. Romzek is a fellow of the National Academy of Public Administration and has received awards for her research from the American Society for Public Administration and the American Political Science Association.

“For me, academic administration has been a form of field work,” Romzek said. “I’ve been fortunate to have had an opportunity to apply and test the theories that I study. I appreciate the opportunity to serve KU in this leadership role, but it’s time for me to re-focus my efforts on my scholarship. At the request of Provost Vitter, I’ve agreed to stay on until Aug. 31 to help the new senior vice provost transition into these responsibilities.”

Campus closeup
Sarah Seguin, assistant professor of electrical engineering
Read more


The University of Kansas prohibits discrimination on the basis of race, color, ethnicity, religion, sex, national origin, age, ancestry, disability, status as a veteran, sexual orientation, marital status, parental status, gender identity, gender expression, and genetic information in the university’s programs and activities. Retaliation is also prohibited by university policy. The following persons have been designated to handle inquiries regarding the nondiscrimination policies and are the Title IX coordinators for their respective campuses: Executive Director of the Office of Institutional Opportunity & Access,, 1246 West Campus Road, Room 153A, Lawrence, KS 66045, 785-864-6414, 711 TTY (for the Lawrence, Edwards, Parsons, Yoder, and Topeka campuses); Director, Equal Opportunity Office, Mail Stop 7004, 4330 Shawnee Mission Parkway, Fairway, KS 66205, 913-588-8011, 711 TTY (for the Wichita, Salina, and Kansas City, Kansas, medical center campuses).