Donald R. Easton-Brooks of Eastern Oregon University has been named dean of the School of Education at the University of South Dakota, starting June 22.
Easton-Brooks spent two years at Eastern Oregon in La Grande as a professor and dean of the Colleges of Business and Education. He is a 1988 graduate of Greenville College in Greenville, Illinois, with a bachelor’s degree in sociology. He received his master’s degree in early childhood special education at the University of Colorado at Denver in 1995 and earned his doctorate in education leadership and innovation from UC-Denver in 2006. Easton-Brooks’ research and scholarship includes urban education, ethnic-matching of students and teachers, minority education and teacher diversity.
“We are thrilled to have this outstanding leader join the USD community,” said USD Provost Jim Moran. “Dr. Easton-Brooks comes to USD with a wealth of experiences especially with respect to connecting the academia with the local communities, in program delivery and curriculum models, in fundraising and in student recruitment and retention.”
Since 1996 Easton-Brooks worked as an instructor and a lecturer in the fields of human development, health and human services and sociology at several colleges and universities. He served as assistant professor of education at the University of North Texas and as associate professor at Hamline University before becoming a full professor at Eastern Oregon in 2013. He has been a member of the American Educational Research Association, the National Association for Multicultural Education and the National Black Child Development Institute.
“I see this opportunity as one that allows us to work effectively with our partners, engage in meaningful and impactful research to provide our students with a quality academic experience and a chance to build strong relationships with alumni,” Easton-Brooks said. “I see us making strong impacts on the various fields in the school, and I am looking forward to assisting the school and the university in building a stronger national and international presence.”
A recent survey conducted by the National Council on Teacher Quality rated elementary education at USD 44th of 788 programs in the country and the secondary education 23rd of 824 programs nationwide.