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Contact: Joe King, Office of Public Affairs
Feb. 6, 2006
DEKALB – Denise Schoenbachler, currently chair of the Department of Marketing in the NIU College of Business, will become dean of the college on July 1, according to an announcement from Provost Ivan Legg. The appointment, which requires final approval next month from NIU’s Board of Trustees, concludes a lengthy national search for a successor to former dean David Graf.
“Dr. Schoenbachler is a superb choice to lead the College of Business,” Legg said. “We looked at candidates from across the country. Ultimately, however, it was clear to the search committee that it was Denise who had the best skills and proper temperament to lead the college.”
NIU President John Peters praised the selection.
“In her role as a chair she has been a dynamic leader and builder of partnerships – within the college, across campus and with businesses throughout the region,” Peters said. “Those skills will serve the College of Business well as she helps raise it to new heights.”
Schoenbachler, who earned her bachelor’s degree and MBA at the University of Louisville, and her doctorate at the University of Kentucky, arrived at NIU as an assistant professor of marketing in 1992. She moved up through the ranks to associate professor (with tenure) in 1997 and became a full professor in 2003.
She earned the department’s Excellence in Teaching Award for six straight years (from 1996 to 2002) and created the direct marketing area of study. A prolific researcher throughout her career, she also has received numerous Best Paper awards. After being named chair of the Marketing Department in 2002, Schoenbachler built a reputation as an effective leader and fundraiser. Her accomplishments include: increasing funding for student scholarships by 100 percent; securing two new funded professorships; securing the college’s first endowed scholarship in marketing; and developing and funding a scholar-mentor program.
During her time as chair she has also built a number of partnerships, developing joint programs and events with the Department of Communication, the Psychology Department and the School of Family, Consumer, and Nutrition Sciences. It was also under her direction that the department launched its successful “NIU Apprentice” class, which drew international publicity.
Schoenbachler has also been active on a number of college and university committees, including the Provost’s Department Chair Task Force on Diversity, the University Academic Planning Council, the Presidential Commission on the Status of Women and the College of Business Strategic Planning Council.
Schoenbachler said that she anticipates maintaining that high level of involvement and activity and relishes the challenges ahead.
“There is so much energy in the college – it’s like a rocket ship waiting to launch,” she said. “We have incredible faculty, hard working students, terrific staff and wonderful facilities. I am honored and excited to have this opportunity.”
Among her priorities, she said, will be increasing fundraising, developing new centers of excellence, and raising the college profile, not only in Chicago, but nationally. Achieving those goals will not always be easy, Schoenbachler concedes, but she doesn’t mind because she has a personal investment in the college.
“NIU, especially the College of Business, means a lot to me,” she said. “I have built my career here, and I’ve watched the college grow and develop. I cried when they announced the construction of Barsema Hall – and my son is a recent alumnus of the college. I have a very personal stake in the NIU College of Business and I intend to see that it thrives.”
Schoenbachler will take over the dean’s post from William Tallon who has served as acting dean since the departure of David Graf in May 2005. She is the third member of the college faculty in the past year to become a dean, following in the footsteps of Greg Carnes, who recently became dean of the College of Business at Lipscomb University, and Tallon who recently accepted the position of dean of the Gordon Ford College of Business at Western Kentucky University.