Deborah Voltz, Ed.D., professor of curriculum and instruction and director of the UAB Center for Urban Education, has been tapped to be dean of the School of Education in UAB's College of Arts and Sciences effective Jan. 1.

A Birmingham native and graduate of West End High School with more than 25 years of experience as an educator and champion for urban students and children with special needs, Voltz  has been responsible for the university obtaining millions of grant dollars for educational research and teacher training. She also has published scores of academic articles and book chapters on topics ranging from strategies for success in diverse classrooms to urban special education in the context of standards-based reform.

"Debbie Voltz is uniquely qualified for this position given her tremendous experience as a teacher, researcher and administrator, as well as for her talent for preparing effective grant proposals," said College of Arts and Sciences Dean Thomas DiLorenzo. "As a full professor with strong ties to the education community, she is positioned to leverage all of her talents and strong connections for the benefit of UAB faculty, staff and students, and also the Birmingham City School System and the state."

Voltz, who will report to DiLorenzo, will continue to direct the Center for Urban Education. She also will be a member of the newly constituted UAB Deans' Council, said Provost Eli Capilouto.

"Dr. Voltz is passionate about education scholarship and research, and deeply committed to community outreach and service," Capilouto said, noting that Voltz is the first African-American academic dean in UAB's only-42-year history as an autonomous university.

"Debbie's commitment to interdisciplinary research and scholarship make her someone who can lead a strategically positioned  School of Education in collaborative efforts with the rest of the college and the university," Capilouto said.