headshot of James Wolfinger

(DePaul University/Jeff Carrion)

Illinois State University Provost Jan Murphy has announced the appointment of James Wolfinger as dean of the College of Education, effective July 1. Wolfinger currently serves as an associate dean in the College of Education at DePaul University.

Kevin Laudner, professor and associate dean in the College of Applied Science and Technology, will continue to serve as interim dean of the College of Education until July 1.

“Dr. Wolfinger brings a wealth of academic expertise and leadership experience to the role of dean of the College of Education,” said Provost Murphy. “He will be a valuable addition to Illinois State’s academic leadership team. My heartfelt thanks go to the faculty and staff involved in the search process. I look forward to working with Dr. Wolfinger when he arrives this summer.”

Wolfinger is the associate dean for curriculum and programs in DePaul University’s College of Education. In that position, he oversees strategic budgeting; works to build relationships with Chicago area schools, government agencies and civic organizations; directs the college’s assessment program; and coordinates enrollment enhancement initiatives. He is a professor of history and education, holding a joint appointment in DePaul’s History Department and Department of Teacher Education.

“I am truly honored to serve as the next dean of the College of Education at Illinois State University,” said Wolfinger. “Illinois State is widely regarded as one of the leading colleges of education in the state and nation. I am excited to work with colleagues to build on the strengths of the College to address the challenges facing the next generation of students and educators in Illinois.”

Wolfinger earned a bachelor’s degree in social science education from Auburn University, a master’s degree in history from the University of Georgia, and a Ph.D. in history from Northwestern University.