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Dr. Jean Bartels Named Interim President of Georgia Southern


University System of Georgia (USG) Chancellor Hank Huckaby has named Dr. Jean Bartels as interim president at Georgia Southern University following the appointment of Dr. Brooks A. Keel as president of Georgia Regents University.

She will begin her new assignment on July 20, upon the departure of Keel.

“I am very honored that Chancellor Hank Huckaby and the Board of Regents have the confidence to appoint me as the interim president of Georgia Southern University,” said Bartels. “I have a strong allegiance and dedication to this University and will be proud to continue with the momentum of success we are experiencing at Georgia Southern. There will be no standing still.”

Bartels currently serves as provost and vice president for academic affairs at Georgia Southern. She has held this position since July 1, 2012. Prior to this role, she served as dean of the Georgia Southern College of Health and Human and Sciences. Bartels came to Georgia Southern in 1999 to serve as the chair and professor of the School of Nursing.

“Dr. Bartels is an incredible asset to Georgia Southern and our University System,” said Chancellor Hank Huckaby. “I look forward to her leadership during this time of transition and am confident that her stewardship will ensure that Georgia Southern continues to thrive.”

Some of Bartels’ service to professional organizations includes serving as president of the American Association of Colleges of Nursing (AACN) and as a member of its board of directors and executive committee. She has also served as a member of the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE) Steering Committee that created the CCNE accrediting body and as a CCNE site evaluator.

Bartels received a diploma in nursing from Columbia Hospital School (Milwaukee, Wis.), a Bachelor of Science in nursing from Alverno College (Milwaukee, Wis.), a Master of Science in nursing from Marquette University (Milwaukee, Wis.) and a Ph.D. in nursing from the University of Wisconsin, Milwaukee.

Keel has served as president of Georgia Southern University since January 2010. As president he has focused on expanding undergraduate and graduate education through research and community experience. He has also worked to raise the national profile of Georgia Southern academically and athletically.

“I had the great fortune to earn both my undergraduate and graduate degrees in Augusta, and I’m eternally grateful for the fantastic opportunities in research, scholarship leadership they have brought to my life,” said Dr. Brooks Keel. “I am honored and humbled to return to Augusta and rejoin Georgia Regents University at this exciting time.”

Under Keel’s leadership, Georgia Southern launched the Allen E. Paulson College of Engineering and Information Technology and the Institute for Interdisciplinary STEM Education. The University also manages the Herty Advanced Materials Development Center, which was transferred to the institution by the state of Georgia.

He also serves on the board of directors of the Georgia Southern University Research and Service Foundation, board of trustees of the Georgia Southern University Foundation and board of directors of the Georgia Southern University Housing Foundation.

Prior to joining Georgia Southern, Keel served as vice chancellor for research and economic development and professor of biological sciences at Louisiana State University (Baton Rouge).

Keel received a Bachelor of Science in biology/chemistry from Augusta College (now Georgia Regents University), a doctorate in reproductive endocrinology from the Medical College of Georgia (now Georgia Regents University) and completed post-doctoral work at the University of Texas Health Science Center (Houston) and University of South Dakota School of Medicine (Vermillion).


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