CU-Boulder names James Austin interim dean of College of Music

June 28, 2013 •

University of Colorado Boulder Provost Russell Moore today announced the appointment of James Austin as interim dean of the College of Music effective July 1.

Austin, a professor of music education, joined CU-Boulder’s College of Music in 1994. He has served as associate dean of undergraduate studies since 2006. He was the music education chair from 1997 to 2007. In 2004, the college awarded Austin the Richard Bern Trego faculty fellowship.

“Jim Austin has a long history of service to CU-Boulder and the College of Music as an associate dean, and he is ideally suited to provide steady leadership to the college,” said Moore. “I look forward to working with him and his senior leadership team, which includes associate deans John Davis and Steve Bruns. The College of Music is in good hands moving into the future.”

Austin has been named to the interim post for the 2013-14 academic year while a national search is reopened for a permanent dean of the college.

The former dean of CU-Boulder’s College of Music, Daniel Sher, stepped down this month after 20 years in the position. He returned to the faculty and also is involved in community and donor relations for the college.

Austin’s research interests include student motivation and self-concept development, teacher education, classroom-level assessment, and school and arts policy implications. Before joining CU-Boulder, he taught instrumental music to fourth- through 12th-graders, and was an assistant professor of music education at Ball State University.

Austin said this is a critically important transition period during which the college has an opportunity to recommit to its core missions, explore new leadership possibilities and enhance current operational procedures and programs.

Austin earned his doctorate and a master’s degree in music education at the University of Iowa and a bachelor’s degree in music education from the University of North Dakota.

For more information about CU-Boulder’s College of Music visit

Media Contact:
Bronson Hilliard, CU-Boulder spokesperson, 303-735-6183