Thomas Katsouleas, professor of electrical engineering and electrophysics at the University of Southern California and the school's former vice provost for information services, has been named the new dean of the Pratt School of Engineering.
He succeeds Kristina Johnson, who became provost and vice president of academic affairs at the Johns Hopkins University this past September after eight years at Duke. Robert L. Clark, Thomas Lord Professor of mechanical engineering, has served as interim dean since Johnson's departure.
Katsouleas, forty-nine, joined the faculty of USC's Viterbi School of Engineering in 1991 as an associate professor of electrical engineering and electrophysics. He became a full professor in 1997. An expert in high-performance computing, Katsouleas focuses his research on applying plasma physics to improve and miniaturize particle accelerators, devices that accelerate subatomic particles at high speeds in a controlled fashion. These devices have many applications, from providing information on what happens within atoms to unlocking clues on the origins of the universe.
During his tenure at USC, Katsouleas held a variety of administrative posts, including associate dean of student affairs from 1995 to 2000, and associate dean of research from 2000 to 2001.
Later, while serving as president of the faculty and then as interim vice provost for information services, he led an initiative that overhauled the computing and information services across the campus. That effort led to a major enhancement of wireless and classroom academic infrastructure, as well as a dramatic increase in USC's research supercomputing that made the university second among U.S. universities in computing capacity.
Katsouleas, who will start at Duke in July, is a Los Angeles County ocean lifeguard. He and his wife, Stephanie Katsouleas, have two children.
June 1, 2008