George Petersen has been named the new dean of the School of Education at California Lutheran University.

Petersen is currently co-director of the UCSB/Cal Poly-San Luis Obispo Joint Doctoral Program in Educational Leadership. His former positions include chair of the Department of Graduate Studies in the School of Education at Cal Poly and associate director of the University Council for Educational Administration, a national research and policy organization.

Petersen also has served in leadership and on the faculty at the University of Missouri-Columbia, the University of Evansville in Indiana and Missouri State University. He has extensive experience in program and curriculum development, having designed and taught courses at the undergraduate, master’s and doctoral levels. He also has written two books and numerous articles on educational leadership.

Petersen began his career as a social studies teacher, and the American Association of School Administrators named him one of 100 Outstanding First Year Teachers. He taught at Saint Bonaventure High School in Ventura, Bishop Garcia Diego High School in Santa Barbara and San Benito High School in Hollister.

His many honors include the national 2004 UCEA Distinguished Service Award, the 2008 Association of California School Administrators Region 13 Education Professor of the Year and 2008 UCSB Distinguished Alumni Award.

“Dr. Petersen brings an impressive combination of experience in teaching, research, program development and administration to CLU,” said Leanne Neilson, provost and vice president for academic affairs. “His scholarship in the leadership of superintendents and school boards will benefit students and enhance our partnerships with school districts.”

Petersen has a doctorate and master’s degree in educational policy, organizations and leadership studies and a bachelor’s degree in cultural anthropology from UCSB.

He will begin his new position July 1. He will replace Carol Bartell, who is retiring.

“CLU has a well-deserved reputation for excellence and innovation, and I look forward to being a part of this tradition as the new dean of the School of Education,” Petersen said.

— Karin Grennan is the media relations manager for California Lutheran University.