Academic Leadership: The Online Journal


Pamela Benoit


The role of department chair in today’s colleges and universities is much different and more multifaceted than it was just a decade ago. Academic department chairs must conduct performance reviews, oversee budgets, carry out strategic planning, and negotiate their department’s identity within highly complex institutions (Hecht, Higgerson, Gmelch, & Tucker, 1999). Evidence gathered from ACE workshops indicated that as many as two-thirds of the chairs had no prior administrative experience and yet they face a demanding role requiring a wide range of talents (Hecht, Higgerson, Gmelch, & Tucker, 1999).