University of South Alabama, Office of Public Relations

March 17 , 2003

Johnson Appointed Dean of Arts and Sciences

Longtime University of South Alabama faculty member and administrator Dr. G. David Johnson has been appointed dean of the College of Arts and Sciences.

A member of USA’s faculty since 1984, Johnson has a distinguished career in teaching, research and community service. He has also held a number of administrative positions with the University, including interim dean and associate dean of the College of Arts and Sciences, acting chair of the department of sociology and anthropology, and coordinator of the sociology graduate program.


Johnson was selected to lead the University’s largest academic college following a nationwide search, according to Dr. Patsy Covey, senior vice president for academic affairs.

“I am delighted that we are able to appoint a person of Dr. Johnson’s extraordinary ability,” Covey said. “He is an exceptionally bright, highly respected member of the academic community and a leader in every sense of the word.”

Johnson said using the college’s resources to promote professional development of the faculty is among his top priorities as new dean.

“Much of my energy will be devoted to encouraging and promoting excellence in research, scholarship and creative activity among the members of our faculty.

“Equally important is the pursuit of excellence in teaching and learning,” he said. “We will work, day in and day out, to improve the quality of our already outstanding academic programs."

Johnson has published extensively in scholarly books and journals in sociology, and is a former editor of the journal Sociological Spectrum. He is the recipient of numerous grants from the U.S. Department of Justice, Environmental Protection Agency, Center for Substance Abuse Prevention, and the National Marine Fisheries Service.

Much of his research addresses critical issues that impact the region, including substance abuse prevention, youth violence prevention, diversity and race relations, and environmental attitudes.

Johnson is active in the community and has volunteered his professional service to many local organizations and agencies, including Envision Coastal Alabama, Leadership Mobile, Mobile AIDS Support Services, Mobile County Health Department, Mobile County Chapter of the National Urban League, and the Mayor’s Task Force on Juvenile Crime and Domestic Violence (City of Mobile).

A native of Newport News, Va., he received his bachelor of arts degree in political science and psychology from Coker College in Hartsville, S.C., his master of science degree in sociology from Texas A & M University, and his doctorate in sociology from Southern Illinois University at Carbondale.

As the largest college in the University, the College of Arts and Sciences includes 19 departments and several interdisciplinary programs offering 38 majors and 30 minors or certificate programs.

The college also provides the core liberal arts education for all University students, introducing them to a broad spectrum of knowledge in each of four main areas: the humanities, social and behavioral sciences, natural sciences, and fine and performing arts.

The faculty of the College of Arts and Sciences are actively engaged in research, which enables them to integrate recent advances in knowledge into the classroom. They contribute to the growth of knowledge through their research, publications and creative achievements, both in their professions and in the community.

The College of Arts and Sciences currently enrolls 3,359 students. Now in its 40th year of service, USA has more than 50,000 alumni.

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