Denise A. Spangler, a faculty member and administrator with an exemplary record of collaboration both on campus and off, has been named dean of the University of Georgia College of Education.
Spangler, the Bebe Aderhold Professor in Early Childhood Education, has served as interim dean since March. Her appointment as dean is effective May 1.
“Dr. Spangler has shown an unwavering commitment to excellence in instruction, research and outreach,” said Senior Vice President for Academic Affairs and Provost Pamela Whitten. “Under her extraordinary leadership, the UGA College of Education is poised for even higher levels of excellence.”
Spangler joined the UGA faculty in 1995 and has held a series of leadership positions, from head of the department of mathematics and science education to senior associate dean and, most recently, interim dean.
“Throughout her career, Dr. Spangler’s contributions to her field and to the faculty, staff and students of the UGA College of Education have been numerous and far-reaching,” said President Jere W. Morehead. “She will make an outstanding dean, and I am confident that the future of the college is very bright with her at the helm.”
Spangler’s research has been funded by $4.5 million in grants from organizations such as the National Science Foundation and the Spencer Foundation. She has published approximately 100 scholarly articles, books and book chapters related to STEM education and how elementary education majors learn to teach mathematics. Working with several colleagues across campus, she contributed to the University System of Georgia’s STEM Education Improvement Plan and also served on the President’s Task Force on Undergraduate Education at UGA.
At a national level, she co-directed the Service, Teaching and Research (STaR) Fellows Program of the Association of Mathematics Teacher Educators. She also served as a member of the board of directors of the National Council of Teachers of Mathematics. In Athens, she was an elected member of the Clarke County School District Board of Education for 12 years, including two terms as vice president of the board.
Spangler is a recipient of the university’s Richard B. Russell Award for Excellence in Undergraduate Teaching and in 2016 was named a mentor for UGA’s Teaching Academy Fellows program. Her additional honors include the D. Keith Osborn Faculty Senate Award for Teaching Excellence from the College of Education, the university’s Sara Moss Fellowship and the Outstanding Faculty Member Award from UGA’s Kappa Delta Epsilon Educational Honor Society.
Spangler earned her doctorate in mathematics education from UGA and earned her master’s and bachelor’s degrees in mathematics and elementary education, respectively, from Illinois State University.
“I am honored and excited to have the opportunity to serve as dean of the UGA College of Education,” Spangler said. “I look forward to working with faculty, staff, students, alumni and partners from across Georgia and beyond.”