You are here


Bob Steele has announced that he will retire in June.

To: Colleagues

From: Bonnie Thornton Dill, Dean

Date: February 22, 2012

Re: Robert (Bob) Steele Retirement

The man who has given the David C. Driskell Center (DCDC) a “public face,” Dr. Robert Steele, has decided to retire from the University and step down as Executive Director of the center effective June 30, 2012. Those of you who have had the privilege of working closely with Bob will join me in acknowledging that his departure represents a great loss for the College and the University.

A professor of psychology for twenty-nine years and former Associate Dean in the College of Behavioral and Social Sciences, Bob, for the past eight years, has provided dynamic leadership for the center, bringing it into national prominence and recognition as a leading institution for the study of the visual arts of African Americans. The center, the only facility of its kind at an American research university, has played a significant role in the college’s research, scholarship and teaching of African American and American art.

During Bob’s tenure as Executive Director, he worked to ensure the financial stability of the center by securing several endowment accounts and award funds. Under his leadership, DCDC presented thirteen exhibitions of which eight traveled to more than twenty museums and centers nationwide. Today, the Center has an archive and permanent art collection that includes 50,000 objects and more than 1,200 works of art.

The next few months provide us an opportunity to acknowledge and celebrate all that Bob has achieved with the center. Please join me in thanking Bob for his many years of dedicated, enthusiastic leadership and service to the center, the college and the university. He has built upon the legacy of distinguished university professor emeritus, David C. Driskell, in ways that will expand and ensure an appreciation of African American visual arts for future generations.

The college has initiated a national search to fill the position of Executive Director of the David C. Driskell Center, chaired by distinguished university professor Ira Berlin (History). The position announcement is being disseminated and is now available on the web.

Web Announcement: