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Dr. Barbara Sanders Appointed Whitworth’s Interim Dean for School of Education

February 27, 2013

Whitworth University President Beck A. Taylor announced Feb. 12 the appointment of Interim Provost  Barbara Sanders, Ed.D., to the position of interim dean for the School of Education. Sanders will bring to the position her deep expertise in educational research and her 17 years as a Whitworth faculty member. She will begin work in her new position on July 1.

“My mantra has always been to focus on the students and how to serve them best,” says Sanders, who will oversee the addition of more graduate-level programs, such as marriage family therapy and additional special education programs, while also seeking opportunities in offering even more graduate level programs. “This has worked really well for all of our goals.”

“Barb has done a wonderful job leading Whitworth’s academic division this year as interim provost, says Whitworth President Beck A. Taylor. “As we make the transition to a new dean in the School of Education, the university will once again rely upon Barb’s abilities to lead important initiatives, to foster innovation, and to bring important resources to bear for our education students, staff and faculty.” Taylor adds, “I am confident that the strong wind in our sails will be sustained under Barb’s experienced leadership.”

In addition to teaching at the secondary level in public schools, Sanders has worked as a professor in the School of Education at Whitworth, teaching undergraduate- and graduate-level master’s courses. She has also served as the assessment director in the School of Education, as acting chair of the department of teacher education, and as the university’s associate dean of instruction before becoming interim provost in June 2012.

“With her service in the provost’s office and on the president’s cabinet, Barb understands the big picture of university governance, the strategic plan and budgeting,” says current Dean of the School of Education Dennis Sterner, who will be stepping down in June. “Barb cares about the work we do and the people in the School of Education. She is committed to doing what is best for the children and young people in our schools.”

Sanders holds an Ed.D from Washington State University, an M.I.T. from Whitworth University, and a B.S. from Montana State University.

Located in Spokane, Wash., Whitworth is a private liberal arts university affiliated with the Presbyterian Church (USA). The university, which has an enrollment of nearly 3,000 students, offers 60 undergraduate and graduate degree programs.


Kathryn Ayers, assistant to the dean, Whitworth University, (509) 777-3785 or

Lucas Beechinor, media relations manager, Whitworth University, (509) 777-4703 or