NCAA, Olympic diving coach Jim Stillson to retire after 33 years at SMU

[fusion_builder_container hundred_percent=”no” equal_height_columns=”no” menu_anchor=”” hide_on_mobile=”small-visibility,medium-visibility,large-visibility” class=”” id=”” background_color=”” background_image=”” background_position=”center center” background_repeat=”no-repeat” fade=”no” background_parallax=”none” enable_mobile=”no” parallax_speed=”0.3″ video_mp4=”” video_webm=”” video_ogv=”” video_url=”” video_aspect_ratio=”16:9″ video_loop=”yes” video_mute=”yes” video_preview_image=”” border_size=”” border_color=”” border_style=”solid” margin_top=”” margin_bottom=”” padding_top=”” padding_right=”” padding_bottom=”” padding_left=””][fusion_builder_row][fusion_builder_column type=”1_1″ layout=”1_1″ spacing=”” center_content=”no” hover_type=”none” link=”” min_height=”” hide_on_mobile=”small-visibility,medium-visibility,large-visibility” class=”” id=”” background_color=”” background_image=”” background_position=”left top” background_repeat=”no-repeat” border_size=”0″ border_color=”” border_style=”solid” border_position=”all” padding=”” dimension_margin=”” animation_type=”” animation_direction=”left” animation_speed=”0.3″ animation_offset=”” last=”no”][fusion_text]

Jim Stillson, AAC Diving Coach of the Year 2017
SMU’s Jim Stillson with the American Athletic Conference’s 2017 Diving Coach of the Year Award. Stillson has announced his retirement after 33 years with SMU.

SMU Diving Coach Jim Stillson, a three-time NCAA Coach of the Year and 16-time conference Coach of the Year, has announced his retirement after 33 seasons on the Hilltop.

As head of the Mustang men’s and women’s programs, Stillson coached four individuals to eight NCAA Championships and 20 student-athletes to 71 All-America honors. He has also mentored three NCAA Divers of the Year and 10 U.S. National Champions. Overall, 21 of Stillson’s SMU divers have won 89 conference championships.

“We want to thank Coach Stillson for his years of service and his outstanding contributions to the successes of our student-athletes,” said Director of Athletics Rick Hart. “He is a legend in his field and has set the standard for SMU Diving. He has positioned us to compete for championships for years to come. We look forward to having him back on campus this fall when we open our new natatorium and having him join us to celebrate the future championships our divers will win because of the foundation he has laid.”

On the international level, Stillson has coached three Olympians to four appearances, including SMU alumnus Scott Donie (USA), who competed at the 1992 and 1996 Games, winning silver in 1992. Stillson also mentored 1996 Olympians Ali Al-Hasan (Kuwait) and Tony Iglesias (Bolivia).

In 1989, Stillson was named the NCAA Men’s Diving Coach of the Year and, in 1990 and 1995, the NCAA Women’s Diving Coach of the Year. Stillson served as one of the U.S. Diving National Team coaches from 1987-91 and again in 1997, leading the team at events in countries such as Europe, Australia, China and the Soviet Union. In addition, he was selected as a team leader for the USA Diving team at the 2007 Pan American Games in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.

Stillson’s honors include the 1999 U.S. Olympic Committee Diving Coach of the Year award and the 1992 Mike Malone Memorial Award, given for outstanding contributions to diving by the national governing body of the sport. In 2015, he was honored by the International Swimming Hall of Fame with the Paragon Award, which is presented annually to individuals or organizations for outstanding contributions to aquatics.

> Read the full story from SMU Athletics

[/fusion_text][/fusion_builder_column][/fusion_builder_row][/fusion_builder_container]

SMU CUL Dean Gillian McCombs announces her retirement, effective summer 2017

Gillian M. McCombs, Dean and Director, SMU Central University LibrariesGillian McCombs, dean and director of SMU’s Central University Libraries, has announced her retirement from that position effective in summer 2017.

SMU Provost Steven Currall will announce the timeframe for the search for a new permanent dean and director this fall.

McCombs joined SMU in 1998 and guided the University’s central library system through a transformation of resources, facilities and services in response to changing student and faculty needs. One of the most visible examples of her leadership is the Fondren Library Center renovation. The Fondren Foundation Centennial Reading Room and new Hillcrest Foundation Exhibit Hall opened April 15, marking the completion of the first phase. The final phase includes a Starbucks Café and Collaborative Commons, which will open with a student-centered celebration in September 2016.

> SMU News: SMU celebrates Fondren Library transformation

“Great libraries are the heart of the University, and at the heart of Dean McCombs’ leadership of SMU Central University Libraries has been an unwavering focus on our library users’ evolving needs, particularly those of our students,” said SMU President R. Gerald Turner. “A prime example is the CUL Student Advisory Council she created to provide the student perspective as library staff shapes programs, services and spaces that enhance the user experience and support academic achievement. Gillian has been a passionate advocate for CUL, and we are grateful for her many contributions to the University.”

McCombs oversees three libraries on the main campus – Fondren Library Center, including the Norwick Center for Digital Services; DeGolyer Library, SMU’s principal repository for special collections in the humanities, the history of business, and the history of science and technology; and the Hamon Arts Library in Meadows School of the Arts – as well as the Fort Burgwin Library at SMU-in-Taos and the SMU-in-Plano Library Resource Room.

“Dean McCombs has had a longstanding and distinguished career leading Central University Libraries at SMU. In addition to being an insightful voice about advancing libraries at SMU, Gillian is a globally recognized intellectual leader about the future of libraries, digitization of documents, and the creative use of library buildings to foster innovation and interdisciplinary collaboration,” said SMU Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs Steven Currall. “One of the crowning achievements of her career was the recent renovation of SMU’s Fondren Library to ensure that it meets the current and future needs of SMU faculty and students. Gillian has been an inspiring leader of the CUL staff, a true academic partner with SMU’s other deans, and an invaluable colleague in advancing SMU.”

Among her SMU career highlights:

  • McCombs led CUL’s observance of the University’s Year of the Library in 2013, joining SMU President R. Gerald Turner in welcoming the acquisition of American explorer John Maley’s travel journal (1808-1812) that represented the libraries’ four-millionth volume. The gift was made by the SMU Board of Trustees in honor of former President George W. Bush and First Lady Laura Bush and the opening of the George W. Bush Presidential Center.
  • She launched a digital collections initiative, which now numbers 51 collections comprising 50,000 images, documents, videos and other materials from SMU’s special collections, all available to the public online. CUL also scaled up its delivery of e-resources and now provides access to over one million e-books and 75,000 e-journals.
  • As dean and director, she guided CUL’s participation in several major collaborative ventures including the Greater Western Library Alliance’s Occam’s Reader Project, a groundbreaking e-book pilot program; the Association of College and Research Libraries’ three-year research initiative studying the impact of academic libraries on student achievement; and a partnership with the George W. Bush Presidential Library and the Mount Vernon Ladies Association to bring George Washington’s personal copy of The Acts of Congress to campus.

Throughout her service to SMU, McCombs has published extensively in the areas of organizational culture, technology and digital services, leadership and management, fundraising and historical children’s literature. She has won numerous awards in the library profession and serves on the editorial board of portal: Libraries and the Academy, a research journal focused on the evolving role of academic libraries and librarians.

Her professional affiliations include membership on the Greater Western Library Alliance Board of Directors. She has represented the United States on the International Federation of Libraries Association, Academic Libraries standing committee and has served on numerous committees and advisory boards of the American Library Association. In North Texas she has served on the Dallas Museum of Art’s Libraries, Archives and Imaging Services Committee, the University of North Texas School of Library and Information Sciences Board of Advisors and the Texas Woman’s University School of Library and Information Studies External Constituent Board.

McCombs began her professional career in England as the music librarian at Huddersfield Public Library in her native Yorkshire. Her career in the United States started in Washington, D.C., where she worked at the Landscape Architecture and Garden Library at Dumbarton Oaks, as well as such federal libraries as the National Library of Medicine, the Federal Reserve, and the U.S. Department of the Interior.

Prior to joining SMU, she served as assistant director of technical services and systems for 16 years at the University at Albany, State University of New York (SUNY), where she earned a master’s degree in public administration.

McCombs received a bachelor’s degree in French and European literature (honors) from the University of Warwick and a master’s degree from the Leeds School of Librarianship in England.

Tom Barry announces his retirement as SMU vice president for executive affairs

Thomas E. Barry, SMUThomas E. Barry, who has served as SMU’s vice president for executive affairs since 1995, has announced his retirement from that position effective Dec. 31, 2015. He also has been a member of the marketing faculty in SMU’s Cox School of Business since 1970.

Soon after becoming SMU’s president in 1995, R. Gerald Turner created the vice presidency for executive affairs and appointed Barry to fill it, adding the position to his President’s Executive Council.

“When I came to SMU, I knew that much of my focus would be on preparing SMU and our constituencies for major gift campaigns because we had a critical need for academic resources and campus enhancements,” Turner said. “I wanted a strong administrative leader and experienced academic who knew the University well, who would dig into any project that needed attention, and would bring together teams of colleagues for new initiatives. One of these was to move our strategic planning process forward as the basis for resource development.”

Barry led development of the Master Plan of 1997-2015 to provide direction and cohesion to the physical evolution of the campus, including its expansion east of Central Expressway, as well as improvements to SMU-in-Taos, the University’s New Mexico campus. He worked with SMU architects, facilities staff and oversight committees to help coordinate the addition or renovation of more than 32 campus facilities funded by recent campaigns.

Working with SMU’s other vice presidents and deans, he shepherded development of SMU’s last three strategic plans, including Launching SMU’s Second Century (2016-2025), the new strategic plan to be voted on by SMU’s Board of Trustees at its December 2015 meeting. The strategic plans guided priorities for SMU’s two recent major gift campaigns, The Campaign for SMU: A Time to Lead (1997-2002) and SMU Unbridled: The Second Century Campaign (2008-2015). Together the campaigns raised more than $1.5 billion for scholarships, faculty and academic programs, facilities and the campus experience.

One of the most visible projects benefitting from Barry’s leadership was SMU’s quest to be the home of the George W. Bush Presidential Center. In December 2000, after the U.S. Supreme Court’s ruling on the election results, President Turner gave Barry his next major assignment: “You are going to become an expert on presidential libraries,” he said. Barry researched the 12 existing presidential libraries under the National Archives and Records Administration to learn how they are funded, structured and operated, including what relationships they have with universities. The information helped guide the content of SMU’s successful proposal. As a marketing expert, he was co-leader of the University’s recent branding research and message development.

“In these years of major gift campaigns, heightened outreach and centennial activities, SMU has been very fortunate to have Tom Barry’s quiet, persistent and substantive leadership,” President Turner said. “He labored primarily behind the scenes, but the results of his talents can be seen throughout campus. As a longtime professor of marketing in Cox School of Business, he brought a faculty perspective to administrative decision-making. Through his teaching and research, he has mentored literally thousands of students. I am personally very grateful for his steadfast service and will miss the integrity and candor of his counsel.”

Barry came to SMU in 1970 as visiting assistant professor of marketing and the next year was appointed to the tenure-track position of assistant professor of marketing. Within three years he was promoted to associate professor of marketing with tenure, and in 1979 rose to full professor. He served for two terms as chair of the Marketing Department and three times as associate dean for academic affairs in the Cox School. He has received numerous teaching awards in the Cox School and served on more than 100 University committees.

Throughout his service as an academic administrator, Barry has remained a prolific researcher, producing three books and more than 80 scholarly articles. He has been one of the most frequent contributors to the three leading advertising journals in the nation.

Barry received his Ph.D. in marketing from North Texas State University (now the University of North Texas) and his bachelor’s and master’s degrees in marketing from Southern Illinois University, Carbondale, where he began his teaching career.

In January 2016 Barry will begin a sabbatical year with the option of returning to the Cox faculty.