UNC music scholar Mark Katz tapped as new IAH director


April 15, 2014 | Angie Barker

image_mini-1Mark Katz, professor and chair of the department of music and adjunct professor of communication studies at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, has been named director of the Institute for the Arts and Humanities.

His five-year term begins July 1. John McGowan, who has directed the IAH since 2006, will complete his term at the end of June and return to his full-time faculty role in the department of English and comparative literature.

“We remain grateful for John’s excellent leadership and administration and will celebrate his achievements at the end of the academic year,” said Terry Ellen Rhodes, senior associate dean, fine arts and humanities, for UNC’s College of Arts and Sciences and professor of music. “Mark will bring significant assets to his leadership role at the Institute. He is an inspiring scholar, teacher, fundraiser and administrator, committed to faculty excellence and creative engagement.”

Katz has participated in IAH’s Faculty Fellows, Chairs Leadership and Academic Leadership programs. An IAH innovation grant helped him develop new courses that combine hands-on music making with entrepreneurship and community engagement. That work led to a grant from the U.S. State Department to create an international exchange program that uses hip-hop to promote cultural exchange and conflict resolution.

Katz’s active involvement with IAH and its programs will serve him well as director, McGowan said.

“The Institute for the Arts and Humanities prides itself on being a full-service faculty center, even while it serves as a bridge between Carolina faculty and alumni interested in UNC’s liberal arts tradition,” said McGowan, Ruel W. Tyson Jr. Distinguished Professor of the Humanities. “Mark is going to do a great job making sure that the IAH continues to evolve along with the faculty it serves. I am thrilled to be handing the reins over to him.”

Katz joined UNC’s music faculty in 2006 and became department chair in July 2012. He previously served as chair of the department of musicology at the Peabody Conservatory of Johns Hopkins University. His research explores the intersections of music, technology and culture. He is author of three books, an edited volume and numerous publications. His latest book, Groove Music: The Art and Culture of the Hip-Hop DJ, was named among the 20 best music books of 2013 by Rolling Stone magazine.  He is editor of the Journal of the Society for American Music, a senior editor for Oxford Handbooks Online and member of the National Recordings Preservation Board. Katz received a UNC Hettleman Prize for Artistic and Scholarly Achievement in 2011. He is a classically trained violinist and holds Ph.D. and M.A. degrees in musicology from the University of Michigan and a B.A. in philosophy from the College of William and Mary.

The Institute for the Arts and Humanities aims to be a full-service faculty center, providing resources to support faculty initiatives and a place for enriching intellectual exchanges.  Its two core programs – the Faculty Fellows Program and Ruel W. Tyson Jr. Academic Leadership Programs – use a collaborative model to help faculty develop their talents and goals. The institute also pursues activities that respond to emerging academic trends and issues of concern to the UNC community and that strengthen the liberal arts at UNC.


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