Barry Braun selected to lead Colorado State University Department of Health and Exercise Science

Note to Reporters: A photo of Barry Braun is available with this news release at

Barry Braun, director of the Energy Metabolism Laboratory at the University of Massachusetts Amherst, has been selected to head the Department of Health and Exercise Science at Colorado State University.

Braun will start his new position at CSU on Aug. 15, succeeding the current department head, Gay Israel.

“Barry Braun is an award-winning teacher, mentor and scholar with outstanding academic credentials and experiences,” College of Health and Human Sciences Dean Jeff McCubbin said. “We are fortunate to recruit him and look forward to his leadership for the next phase of the Department of Health and Exercise Science. This is an exciting new hire for our college.”

Israel, who was department head for the past 18 years, plans to move into a three-year transitional role with HES.

Braun credited Israel with positioning the department to become one of the best units of its kind in the country, thanks to a burgeoning undergraduate program, top-flight facilities, excellent staff and a young corps of dedicated, brilliant faculty who are brimming with energy and creativity.

He says he supports giving faculty more flexibility in how they apportion their research, teaching and service time, so that individuals’ workloads can be tailored to their passion and strengths.

Braun also emphasizes the need to not just identify strengths in the department and areas in which to invest, but also the things that can be de-emphasized while still increasing overall quality. He added, however, that he won’t be identifying those things unilaterally. Braun described his management style as “consultative leadership,” in which all stakeholders have an opportunity to give input before a decision is made.

“I’m not going to walk in and say, ‘Here are three things that we’re doing and not going to do anymore,’ that would be a big mistake,” he said. “Everything you want to de-emphasize is going to be someone else’s baby.”

Braun is the recipient of a UMass Amherst University Distinguished Teaching award, evidence of his commitment to supporting and rewarding teaching and outreach. He received his Ph.D. in nutritional sciences from the University of California, Berkeley; an M.S. in exercise science from UMass Amherst; and a B.A. in biology from the University of Pennsylvania.

The CSU Department of Health and Exercise Science has 1,449 undergraduate students, 26 master’s students, and 13 Ph.D. students enrolled. It is the second most popular undergraduate major at Colorado State. The Human Performance Clinical/Research Laboratory in the department is designated as a Program of Research and Scholarly Excellence at CSU.

The Department of Health and Exercise Science is in the College of Health and Human Sciences at CSU.