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Dean Jeffrey Henderson will return to the classroom

CAS leader to resign post in July 2007

Dean Jeffrey Henderson

Jeffrey Henderson, dean of Arts and Sciences and BU’s William Goodwin Aurelio Professor of Greek Language and Literature, has decided to return to teaching after five years as dean. Henderson’s resignation, which will become effective July 1, 2007, was announced last Friday by Provost David K. Campbell.

“Jeff Henderson has brought a real scholar’s intellect and vision — as well as a wonderfully droll wit — to the leadership of CAS,” said Campbell. “He has always sought the highest standards.”

In a letter to CAS faculty, Henderson explained that he has always seen himself as a professor in a service role rather than a career administrator.

“I have found my work for the college enormously rewarding,” he wrote. “For me, there are no greater thrills than opening the minds of students to my own intellectual passions or, through scholarship, contributing new knowledge to the world.”

Boston University President Robert Brown sent a letter to the faculty of CAS saying that Henderson has served the College and Graduate School of Arts and Sciences and the University with great distinction during a challenging period of transition and uncertainty. “We know we speak for the whole community when we say how grateful we are to him for his wisdom and leadership during these years,” said Brown.

Campbell recalled many an enjoyable meeting with Henderson at local coffee shops. “During the time when we were fellow deans, we would meet regularly at the Espresso Royale cafe,” he said. “I have always admired Jeff’s ability to embrace and understand the tremendous intellectual range represented in CAS. I have yet to meet another distinguished classicist who can speak knowledgeably and convincingly about the importance of, for example, the D-zero high energy physics experiment at Fermilab.”

Campbell praised Henderson’s many accomplishments during his years as dean. “His success in attracting the recently announced Slater endowed chair in Judaic Studies being one good example,” he said. “I look forward to working with him to make his final year the most successful yet.”

Henderson, who came to Boston University in 1991 as chair of the department of classical studies and was the founding director of the CAS Honors Program, is known for his pioneering work on ancient Greek drama and politics and for his editions and translations of the comic playwright Aristophanes. He has held fellowships from the National Endowment for the Humanities, the American Council of Learned Societies, and the John Simon Guggenheim Foundation. He currently serves as vice president for research of the American Philological Association, the professional organization for classicists in North America, and as general editor of the 500-volume Loeb Classical Library, the world’s premier series of texts and translations of Greek and Latin authors, published by Harvard University Press.

Campbell said the process of identifying Henderson’s successor will begin this fall with the formation of a Faculty Advisory Committee.