Events
  • Viet Thanh Nguyen’s bestselling novel The Sympathizer won the 2016 Pulitzer Prize for Fiction, the First Novel Prize from the Center for Fiction, and a Carnegie Medal from the American Library Association. It was also a finalist for the PEN/Faulkner Award and the PEN/Robert W. Bingham Prize for Debut Fiction. Nguyen is also the author of Race and Resistance: Literature and Politics in Asian America and Nothing Ever Dies: Vietnam and the Memory of War.

  • Tonya Foster

    Sep 21| Lectures
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    Poet Tonya Foster is the author of the collection A Swarm of Bees in High Court. Her work has appeared in nocturnes, Callaloo, Traffic, Gulf Coast, and other journals. Her essays have appeared in NY Arts Magazine, NYFA Quarterly and The Poetry Project Newsletter. A co-editor of Third Mind: Teaching Creative Writing Through Visual Art, Foster teaches at California College of the Arts and lives in the Bay Area.

  • Opening Reception

    Sep 24| Special Event
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    New York-based artist Polly Apfelbaum’s work has situated itself as a hybrid of painting, sculpture, and installation over a career spanning 30 plus years. Exploring the intricacies of color, Apfelbaum weaves her way, both literally and conceptually, through ideas of Minimalism, Pop aesthetics, and Color Field painting to blur the lines between two and three dimensional art making.

  • Artist Polly Apfelbaum in conversation with Connie Butler, within Apfelbaum's exhibition Face (Geometry) (Naked) Eyes.

     

  • John Keene

    Oct 05| Lectures
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    John Keene is the author of the novels Annotations and Counternarratives, as well as several other works, including the poetry collection Seismosis, with artist Christopher Stackhouse, and a translation of Brazilian author Hilda Hilst's novel Letters from a Seducer. The recipient of a Whiting Award, Keene has been a member of the Dark Room Writers Collective and a Cave Canem fellow. He has served as the managing editor of Callaloo and taught at Northwestern. He currently teaches at Rutgers University-Newark and lives in New York.

  • Artist Polly Apfelbaum in conversation with David Pagel, within Apfelbaum's exhibition Face (Geometry) (Naked) Eyes.

     

  • Renee Gladman

    Oct 19| Lectures
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    Renee Gladman is the author of eight books of prose and poetry, including the Ravicka triology, published by Dorothy (Event Factory, The Ravickians, and Ana Patova Crosses a Bridge). Other titles include Arlem, Not Right Now, Juice The Activist, A Picture Feeling, and Newcomer Can't Swim. Since 2004, she has been the publisher of Leon Works, a perfect bound series of books of experimental prose, and also has edited the Leroy chapbook series.

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Provost

Lavender

Provost Randall Lavender

The Provost is the Chief Academic Officer of the College and is responsible for all aspects of academic life at Otis. The mission of the Academic Affairs division is to promote student learning and success through exceptional educational programs, opportunities, and support.

Specific Roles and Responsibilities are distributed among various leaders, including the Associate Provost for Assessment and Accreditation, the Associate Provost for Academic Administration, and the Academic Projects Manager. 

Areas of education delivery and student support include:

The Provost also serves as the academic liaison to the Board of Trustees and Board of Governors, and chief administrative liaison to the College’s faculty governance bodies, the Academic Assembly and Faculty Senate, and the part-time faculty union. 

In collaboration with the Student Success division, the Provost oversees co-curricular offerings and student success-enhancing initiatives.


The Provost’s Office facilitates academic administration at the College, coordinates the Academic Meeting Schedule, organizes the Annual Faculty Convocation, conducts the annual Academic Excellence Awards and  Teaching Excellence Awards processes, and, in collaboration with Human Resources & Development, leads the New Faculty Orientation. See also: Faculty Events and Activities

 

lavender_provost

Randall Lavender

Provost
Ahmanson Hall, 2nd floor
provost@otis.edu
(310) 665-6988

 

Primary Responsibilities

  • Chief Academic Officer
  • Academic Planning
  • Continuing Eduction and Pre-College Programs
  • Divisional Budgets and Space
  • Academic Advising and Mentoring
  • Operations and Services

Randall Lavender earned his M.F.A. in Sculpture at Claremont Graduate University and a B.A. in Ceramics at California State University, Fullerton. He joined the Otis faculty in 1983 following faculty appointments at Vanderbilt University, Claremont Graduate University, and California State Polytechnic University, Pomona. A nationally and internationally exhibited artist, his paintings in oil on panel and sculptural tableaux are included in dozens of public and private collections and have been featured or reviewed in numerous books, catalogues, and articles. He served as Associate Chair and Professor in Otis’ Foundation (first-year) program for more than a decade before joining the College's Senior Team and serving as Interim co-Provost, Vice Provost, and in his current position. He has published original research, essays, and articles on art in higher education, educational psychology, contemporary culture, and best college art/design teaching practices in leading art education journals, including Studies in Art Education, Journal of Aesthetic Education, and Foundations in Art Theory (F.A.T.E.) in Review.

Learn more about Provost Lavender at: http://ospace.otis.edu/randalllavender

 

 

Debra Ballard

Debra Ballard

Associate Provost for Assessment and Accreditation
Ahmanson Hall, 2nd floor
dballard@otis.edu
(310) 665-6988

 

Primary Responsibilities

  • Accreditation Liaison Officer
  • Leadership in WASC and NASAD accreditation processes, reporting, and site visits
  • External Program Reviews
  • Assessment of Educational Effectiveness
  • Institutional, Program, & Course Learning Outcomes

Debra Ballard is an educator with extensive curriculum design and leadership experience, published articles, and a record of consultation on education, portfolio use, and assessment in addition to numerous conference presentations at the Western Association of Senior Colleges and Universities, the Association of Independent Colleges of Art and Design, the Association for Authentic, Experiential and Evidence-Based Learning, Art Libraries Society of North America, and Educause. She is the author of “Assessment on Their Own Terms” and a graduate of the WASC Assessment Leadership Academy. After teaching for several institutions of higher learning, Ballard joined the Otis faculty in 1993 and became the Chair of Liberal Arts and Sciences in 1996; she also served as Interim Co-Provost in 2010-11. Ballard earned her M.A. with distinction in English from California State University, Northridge and a B.A. summa cum laude in English from the University of Maryland.

 

 

kim_russo

Kim Russo

Associate Provost for Academic Administration
Ahmanson Hall, 2nd floor
krusso@otis.edu
(310) 665-6988

 

Primary Responsibilities

  • Oversight of Administrative Systems 
  • Human Resources Liaison and Point Person for Faculty Affairs:
      Convocation Planning
      Contracts / Collective Bargaining
      Contact Hour Loads
      Faculty Development
      Sabbatical Planning
      Faculty & Staff Searches
  • Academic Research
  • Policies and Procedures
  • Student Appeals Support
  • Operations and Business Office Liaison

Kim Russo is an artist, writer, and educator who has exhibited her drawings, paintings and installations throughout the United States and in Ireland, and has received residency fellowships from the Atlantic Center for the Arts, Americans for the Arts (in collaboration with the Irish Arts Council), and the National Endowment for the Arts.  Kim served as Associate Provost for Faculty Affairs and Student Success at California Instituted of the Arts, and as Head of Fine Arts (teaching drawing, painting, writing, and thesis courses) at Whittier College, College of Santa Fe, and Ringling College of Art + Design.  She received her B.F.A. from Tyler School of Art (Temple University) and her M.F.A. from Indiana University, Bloomington.

 

 

matthew penkala

Matthew Penkala

Academic Projects Manager
Ahmanson Hall, 2nd floor
mpenkala@otis.edu
(310) 665-6815

 

Primary Responsibilities

  • Academic Project Management
  • Academic Research Support
  • Divisional Calendar
  • Assessment, Budgets, & Administrative Systems Support
  • Web and Publications
  • HEOA Compliance

Matthew Penkala is an artist whose paintings are included in numerous public and private collections nationally, and have been reviewed or featured in numerous publications and catalogues. Penkala came to Otis in 2012, following an interim faculty position in Painting at Cranbrook Academy of Art. He served as Academic Coordinator in Otis’ Foundation Program for two years before joining the Provost’s Office. He has also been the Faculty Leader for the Foundation Program’s Paris Travel Elective since 2013. He has worked for various Los Angeles-based design firms providing Art Direction and production for web and print based projects. Penkala earned his M.F.A. in Painting at Cranbrook Academy of Art and a B.F.A. in Photography from Arizona State University.

 

 

april_kullis

April Kullis

Executive Assistant to the Provost
Ahmanson Hall, 2nd floor
akullis@otis.edu
(310) 665-6988

 

Primary Responsibilities

  • Provost Scheduling
  • Academic Meeting Schedule
  • Faculty Contracts
  • Administrative Routing
  • Budget Planning Support

April Kullis joined Otis in 2002, working in both the Foundation and Liberal Arts and Sciences Program offices. She moved to the Provost’s Office as Executive Assistant in its founding year and has supported the Provost since that time. Prior to her employment at Otis she served for 15 years as clerical support at the Sheriff’s Department in Oakland County, Michigan. She recently completed a Certificate in Graphic Design at Otis College of Art and Design (2012) and is a promising Graphic Designer.

 

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