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Nov. 8, 2012 Volume 34, No. 12

School of Health Professions dean to step down in spring 2013


Dean is credited with helping train many Missouri health workers

The dean of the School of Health Professions will retire at the end of spring semester 2013, MU officials announced Oct. 29.

Richard Oliver, the school’s founding dean, has spent his entire academic career at MU. In October 2013, he will begin a two-year term as president of the Association of Schools of Allied Health Professions.

“His dedication has been crucial as we have educated students who now care for thousands of people across the state and the nation in many health fields, including physical therapy, occupational therapy, respiratory therapy and speech therapy,” Provost Brian Foster said. 

“We are indebted to him for his service here at MU.”

From 1978 to 1986, Oliver was program director of the Clinical Laboratory Science Program. He became director of the School of Health Professions in 1986, and was named dean in 2000.

“Rich Oliver has helped make Mizzou the world-class institution that it is today,” Foster said. “He has devoted his entire career to making MU a better place for our students, faculty and employees.”

Oliver is a founding member of the Missouri Health Professions Consortium, the Allied Health Research Institute and has led the School of Health Professions’ participation in a student exchange program with the University of Western Cape in South Africa.

Oliver, who earned his bachelor’s, master’s and doctorate at MU, said his university career has been “unbelievably rewarding.”

“Dean Oliver leaves a legacy that goes far beyond teaching, research and service,” said Hal Williamson, MU vice chancellor for health sciences. 

As Oliver’s university career nears its end next spring, “His leadership in health professions will continue well into the future.