Kent State Provost Announces Leadership Appointments

Kent State University's Senior Vice President for Academic Affairs and Provost Todd Diacon announced the following leadership appointments:

University Libraries

Kenneth Burhanna has been appointed interim dean of University Libraries, effective July 1, 2017. Burhanna has served as assistant dean for engagement and outreach in University Libraries since March 2013, and as interim director of University Press for the last year. He is an associate professor in University Libraries.Kenneth Burhanna

"Ken brings a wealth of expertise and experience to this position," Diacon says. "He just completed the UCLA Senior Fellows Program and Association of Research Libraries Leadership Fellows programs for academic research library professionals, and as such he understands well the challenges and opportunities facing university libraries today." 

Burhanna earned his Master of Library and Information Science and Bachelor of Arts in English degrees at Kent State. 

"I am honored to step into this interim leadership role for Kent State University," Burhanna says. "I look forward to working with a great faculty and staff at University Libraries to continue our pursuit of being essential to the success of all those we serve." 

Burhanna replaces James Bracken, Ph.D., who retired on July 1. 

For more information about University Libraries, visit  

Continuing and Distance Education

Valerie Kelly has been appointed interim associate vice president for continuing and distance education, effective July 1, 2017. Kelly has served as executive director of Kent State Online in the Office of Continuing and Distance Education since July 2014. Valerie Kelly

"Kent State is one of the nation's largest providers of online education," Diacon says. "This is so because of Val's great work to date, and I am thrilled she accepted our offer to serve in this role." 

Kelly earned her Master of Science in information architecture and knowledge management and Master of Arts in journalism and mass communication at Kent State.

"I am grateful for the opportunity to lead the Office of Continuing and Distance Education in continuing our work to improve access to quality education for a diverse population of students," Kelly says. "My transition into this leadership role is reinforced by my strong level of commitment and dedication to the distance learning environment, which provides opportunities for innovation, collaboration and entrepreneurship. I look forward to shepherding Kent State's development and integration of quality online learning across the Kent State University system and beyond."

Kelly replaces Deborah Huntsman, who retired on July 1.

For more information about the Office of Continuing and Distance Education, visit

Center for Teaching and Learning

Jennifer Marcinkiewicz, Ph.D., has been appointed director of the Center for Teaching and Learning, effective July 1, 2017. Marcinkiewicz has served as interim director since July 1, 2016, and is an associate professor in the Department of Biological Sciences. Jennifer Marcinkiewicz

"Jenny's dedication to our faculty is notable, and her commitment to teaching excellence is inspiring," Diacon says. "I appreciate her commitment to Kent State."

Marcinkiewicz earned her Ph.D., master's and bachelor's degrees in animal science at the University of Illinois. 

"I am honored to have this opportunity to lead the Center for Teaching and Learning," Marcinkiewicz says. "I look forward to working with faculty in their vital role in making Kent State University a vibrant and inclusive learning environment."

For more information about the Center for Teaching and Learning, visit

POSTED: Thursday, July 6, 2017 01:27 PM
Updated: Friday, July 14, 2017 10:00 AM