Denise A. Seachrist, Ph.D., accepted her appointment as the dean and chief administrative officer of Kent State University at Stark in North Canton, Ohio, on February 1, 2016. She previously served as the interim dean for Kent State Stark, a position she began on July 1, 2014. The Stark Campus is Kent State University’s largest regional campus and the only public university in Stark County.
Prior to coming to Kent State Stark, Seachrist was the director of Kent State University's Hugh A. Glauser School of Music since 2008. She previously served as interim associate provost, interim dean for Academic and Student Services, Regional Campuses and interim assistant dean of Kent State University at Trumbull.
Seachrist, who holds the rank of professor, has been recognized for her stellar career as a faculty member and administrator. In 2004, she was the recipient of the Trumbull Campus Outstanding Administrator Service Award. In 2001, and again in 2003, she received the Trumbull Campus Dean's Award for Leadership and Service. In 1999, she received the Trumbull Campus Outstanding Full-time Faculty Service Award and was selected as one of four delegates to represent Kent State in a 17-day educational exchange to China.
She served on the Warren Philharmonic Orchestra's Board of Trustees from 1998 to 2005, is a past-chair of the University Teaching Council and was a member of the university's 2004-05 Leadership Academy. A specialist in the music of both historical and living German religious communities in Pennsylvania, Seachrist serves as the president of the Communal Studies Association. Additionally, she is on the editorial advisory board of American Music (University of Illinois Press). She is a past member of the editorial board for a Pennsylvania-German History and Culture book series (Penn State Press) and the past series editor of the World Musics series (Kent State University Press). Active in the Stark County community, Seachrist holds board positions with ArtsinStark, the Canton Regional Chamber of Commerce and the Canton Symphony.
She has authored 25 refereed journal articles, two book chapters and entries in Die Musik in Geschichte und Gegenwart: Allgemeine Enzyklopädie der Musik, second edition, The New Grove Dictionary of Music and Musicians, second edition, and The Garland Encyclopedia of World Music, vol. 3, "the United States and Canada." Seachrist is the author of Snow Hill: In the Shadows of the Ephrata Cloister (2010) and The Musical World of Halim El-Dabh (2003), both published by the Kent State University Press.
Seachrist received her Ph.D. in musicology-ethnomusicology from Kent State University and a master of music degree in vocal performance from Youngstown State University. She earned her bachelor’s degree in music from Heidelberg University.