James L. Fry, former vice president for graduate studies, research and economic development at the University of Toledo, has been appointed dean of the Graduate School at Colorado State University.
Fry was responsible for graduate level teaching, research and economic development initiatives with the community at Toledo. He also served as interim senior vice president for academic affairs in 1998-99 and is currently special assistant to the president.
During his 30 years as a faculty member at Toledo, he helped establish a doctoral program in chemistry and was associate chairman and then chairman of the department from 1984-94. In addition to his active research in organic chemistry and some 60 papers published on topics in the field, he taught chemistry classes to students from first-year to graduate levels.
Fry replaces Dean Jaros, the recently retired graduate dean. Fry will report to Judson Harper, Colorado State’s vice president for research and information technology, to focus on the close link between graduate education and research and scholarly activities.
"James Fry brings a blend of classroom and laboratory excellence and administrative skills to this position," Harper said. "We believe Dr. Fry will help us continue to build Colorado State’s nationally recognized graduate programs."
His selection came after a national search led by John Raich, dean of the College of Natural Sciences, narrowed the field to four candidates. All finalists met with Colorado State faculty, students and staff in open forums on campus. Fry’s appointment becomes effective in late August.
"I’m delighted to join Colorado State University as dean of the Graduate School," Fry said. "Already, I’ve met many talented people here, and I look forward to the challenges of working together to ensure strong, relevant graduate programs at Colorado State."
Fry’s honors include Toledo’s Sigma Xi Chapter Award for Outstanding Research in 1988, the College of Arts and Sciences Exceptional Merit Award in 1989, the university’s Outstanding Faculty Research Award in 1992 and designation by Bowling Green State University’s chemistry department as Alumnus of the Year in 1997.
For five years Fry served as the University of Toledo president’s representative to the Board of Trustees of the Center of Science and Industry in Toledo. From 1997 to the present he has been a member of the Center for Manufacturing Excellence governing board’s executive committee. He is a member of the national membership committee of the Council on Graduate Schools and the Ohio Aerospace Institute trustees and is a delegate to the Ohio Science and Technology Council.
He has also served the Ohio Board of Regents as a member of the advisory committee on graduate studies, the research officers council and the commission on the funding of graduate education.
Fry earned his doctorate at Michigan State University and a bachelor’s degree from Bowling Green State University in Ohio. He was a Petroleum Research Fund Fellow at Michigan State, a National Institutes of Health Postdoctoral Fellow at Princeton University and a visiting scholar at the Université des Sciences et Techniques du Languedoc in Montpellier, France.
He is married and has one son.