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West Chester Names New Dean of Health Sciences

A former associate vice chancellor and provost of North Carolina A & T State University in Greensboro, North Carolina, has been named dean of West Chester University's College of Health Sciences. Linda Adams, who holds degrees in public health and nursing, replaces Donald Barr, who retired after 15 years with the University.

"Dr. Adams brings years of successful leadership in academia, as well as impressive experience here and abroad teaching and conducting research," notes West Chester University provost Linda Lamwers. "We are delighted that she has accepted the position."

Prior to her tenure at North Carolina A & T State University where she served as provost and as associate vice chancellor for University Outreach, Professional Development and Distance Education, Adams served as dean and professor at Oakland University's School of Nursing. She also held leadership positions in higher education at the University of Maryland, Coppin State University, and Hampton University.

From 1989 to 1993, Adams served on the cabinet of Mayor Schmoke as the Director of Occupational Medicine and Safety, and from 1995 to 1999 under Governor Glendenning as Special Secretary of Children, Youth & Families for the State of Maryland. As such, she was the governor’s chief policy advisor on all matters related to children and youth, managing an interagency budget of over $100 million.

Adams has spent the majority of her career promoting policies and programs to improve the quality of life for children and youth both here and abroad. More than 20 years ago, she was one of the first nurses to assess the characteristics of incarcerated youth, risk factors for delinquent behavior, and the importance of collaborative partnerships to promote healthy behaviors. This research led to the development of a national policy requiring mental health assessments of all detained and adjudicated youth. Adams also has been an integral part of policy development for children and youth through her advisory and consulting roles in China, India, Korea, Brazil and the Caribbean.

A member of the National Advisory Council of the National Institute of Minority Health and Health Disparities of the National Institutes of Health and the National Advisory Council of the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation’s Nurse Faculty Scholars Program, Adams has served on numerous boards, including the National Initiative on Children's Healthcare Quality, the Urban League, and the National Committee to Prevent Child Abuse. She also has served on the government affairs committee of the American Association of Colleges of Nursing, the Magnet Hospital Recognition Board of the Department of Veteran Affairs, and the American Medical Association’s advisory panel on improving health provider's cultural competence.

Over the course of her career, Adams has been honored by more than three dozen organizations, including the American Academy of Nursing, Sigma Xi, Phi Kappa Alpha, the National Black Nurses Association, and as a Robert Wood Johnson Executive Nurse Fellow.

A graduate of Wayne State University where she received her undergraduate and a master's degree in nursing in 1974 and 1978, respectively, Adams went on to earn a master’s and doctorate in public health at Johns Hopkins University's Bloomberg School of Public Health.