Drawn to Oxford

New dean has 'passion to shape young people as lifelong learners'

Douglas A. Hicks
Gerard H. Gaskin

Scholar of religion and economics and accomplished administrator Douglas Hicks has been appointed dean of Oxford College.

Hicks will assume his new role on July 15. He comes to Emory from Colgate University, where he is senior adviser for academic initiatives and professor of religion and previously served as provost and dean of the faculty.

“Doug brings a distinguished career of teaching, collaborative leadership, and community building to Oxford College,” says University Provost and Executive Vice President for Academic Affairs Claire Sterk. “With a passion to shape young people as lifelong learners, he is an ideal person to lead Oxford College in reaching its aspirations to prepare students who see the world through a broad lens.”

Hicks has a PhD and MA in religion from Harvard and an MDiv from Duke. He was an exchange scholar in the Department of Religious Studies at Yale and earned a bachelor’s degree in economics from Davidson College. He rose through the faculty ranks at the University of Richmond to serve as professor of leadership studies and religion before joining the Colgate faculty. In addition to teaching, Hicks served as provost and dean of the faculty at Colgate from 2012 to 2015 and was a key architect of the university’s strategic plan, which included priorities of internationalization, technological innovation, civic engagement, and pedagogical development.

“I am delighted to be joining the Oxford College community, with its strong sense of place and educational mission. I am drawn to Oxford because it offers a unique and firm foundation in the liberal arts,” Hicks says. “Through an intensive two-year experience, Oxford fosters students’ critical thinking and intellectual curiosity, preparing them to flourish in the rest of their time at Emory and their lives beyond. I look forward to collaborating with everyone in the Oxford community to provide the best education possible for our students.”

A frequent commentator in the media while at Colgate, Hicks’s scholarship focuses on leadership, religion in politics and the workplace, and the ethical dimensions of economic issues. He is the author of four books, Religion and the Workplace: Pluralism, Spirituality, Leadership; Inequality and Christian Ethics; Money Enough; and With God on All Sides: Leadership in a Devout and Diverse America. Hicks also is an ordained minister in the Presbyterian Church (USA). He is married to Catherine Bagwell, who will join Oxford as a professor of psychology, and they have two children.

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