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Cronkite Dean Named Vice Provost of ASU's Phoenix Campus

May 19, 2011

Christopher Callahan, who has led the dramatic transformation of the Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communication into one of the nation’s top and most innovative journalism schools, has been named vice provost of Arizona State University’s Downtown Phoenix campus.

Callahan, who will continue as Cronkite dean, will help lead the continued growth of the Phoenix campus, which opened in fall 2006.

Named to the post by Provost and Executive Vice President Elizabeth D. Capaldi, Callahan succeeds College of Public Programs Dean Debra Friedman, who is leaving ASU to become chancellor of the University of Washington, Tacoma.

“The Downtown Phoenix campus is a rich, talented and diverse community that showcases the extraordinary partnership between the City of Phoenix and ASU,” Callahan said. “I’m looking forward to continuing Dean Friedman’s outstanding efforts to carry out Provost Capaldi and President Crow’s vision for a campus that is an important national resource integral to the city and university.”

Callahan is the founding dean of the Cronkite School, who since arriving in 2005 has directed the design and construction of a $71 million state-of-the-art media complex, launched new professional programs such as Cronkite News Service, the Knight Center for Digital Media Entrepreneurship, the New Media Innovation Lab, Cronkite NewsWatch, the Cronkite High School Journalism Institute and a new Washington news program.

He has brought to campus the Donald W. Reynolds National Center for Business Journalism, the Carnegie-Knight News21 digital media initiative and the Hubert H. Humphrey Fellowship program for international journalists.

He also doubled the size of the school’s faculty and recruited top news professionals to the school, which has been featured by The Times of London and The New York Times for its forward thinking and digital focus.

Last year he was named the Scripps Howard Foundation Journalism Administrator of the year. Last month he became the first dean to join the Board of Directors of the American Society of News Editors.

Callahan came to ASU in 2005 from the University of Maryland, where he served as the associate dean of the Philip Merrill College of Journalism and senior editor of American Journalism Review.

A former Washington correspondent for The Associated Press, he has a master’s of public administration degree from Harvard University’s John F. Kennedy School of Government and a bachelor’s degree in journalism from Boston University.

He lives in Scottsdale with his wife, Jean, vice president of human capital at Cole Real Estate Investments, and their sons Cody, 19, a freshman at ASU, and Casey, 14.