URBANA--A new position in the University of Illinois College of Agricultural, Consumer and Environmental Sciences seeks to expand relationships and partnerships between the U of I, the College of ACES and the public and private sectors in northeastern Illinois. The U of I Board of Trustees recently authorized the appointment of James Oliver to the new post, Assistant Dean, Urban and Metropolitan Affairs.
"Since assuming leadership of University of Illinois Extension programs in the Chicago area in 1987, Dr. Oliver has established key links between Extension and a number of private and public entities in the metropolitan area," said Robert A. Easter, Dean of the College of ACES. "We envision this new role as not only cementing existing ties but developing new ideas and partnerships that will help Extension, the College and the U of I better serve the people of this region."
In his new role, Oliver will have overall leadership and direction for College of ACES initiatives and activities in Cook, Lake, DuPage, McHenry, Kane, Kendall, Kankakee, and Will counties.
"We expect that Dr. Oliver will develop, in cooperation with local Extension Councils, Extension and College outreach offices, a more comprehensive system of program outreach and access to U of I resources and opportunities," said Dennis Campion, Associate Dean for Extension and Outreach in the College of ACES.
Oliver said he will work on a broad front to achieve the goals driving creation of the new position.
"I will continue to work with Extension professionals and citizens in providing valuable programming while expanding relationships and partnerships in the Chicago area," said Oliver. "For instance, I will be working with community colleges in the area establishing liaisons with the College and the U of I. I also expect to be involved in exploring opportunities for activities with the private sector."
Oliver earned his Ph.D. at the University of Missouri and joined U of I Extension 22 years ago as a regional director based in Edwardsville. He became Assistant Dean for Urban Programs in 1987 and has been based since that time in the Chicago area.