University News

Boynton Named WIU's History Department Chair

January 9, 2009

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MACOMB, IL - - Longtime Western Illinois University History Professor Virginia "Ginny" Boynton has been named chair of the Western Illinois University history department, according to College of Arts and Sciences Dean Inessa Levi.

Boynton has served as interim chair since January 2008.

"I am glad to be able to announce Ginny's appointment as the permanent chair of the history department," Levi said. "Ginny works tirelessly on behalf of the faculty and students of the department, and continues to support and enhance academic excellence in her department and throughout the college. Her past research and scholarship - - as well as her participation on many important departmental, college, and Universitywide committees - - have given her a unique background ideally suited to this new role."

Boynton joined Western's faculty as an assistant professor in 1995 and was promoted to full professor in 2005. In 2004 she won the State Historical Society's Pratt Award for outstanding scholarship in Illinois History. Through support from the Illinois Women's Committee, she is currently researching women's involvement in the state's government-sponsored war effort during World War I. She has a number of articles, book reviews and essays in a variety of publications; and she is a frequent presenter at academic conferences as well as for campus and community groups.

She has served as chair of the history department's personnel committee, as faculty coordinator for numerous departmental search committees and as chair of the department's undergraduate and graduate grade appeals committees. She has also held Universitywide posts, including faculty senator, chair of the Faculty Council and vice chair of the University Council on Education.

"I am, of course, deeply honored to have been chosen by the history department faculty and by Dean Inessa Levi to serve as the department chair for the department of history," said Boynton. "I am fortunate that I will be leading a dedicated and effective group of faculty members, who repeatedly demonstrate the strength of their commitment to our students through their outstanding teaching and mentoring. In addition, the superb and award-winning historical scholarship being produced by my colleagues in the department, as well as their involvement in all levels of service to the University, indicate their commitment to strengthening Western Illinois University and to enriching the field of history. I look forward to leading our department as we further strengthen our curricular offerings, student programming and professional contributions."

Boynton received her Ph.D. (1995) and master's degree (1990) in history from The Ohio State University; and her Master of Social Work (1979), with a concentration in social policy and planning, and Bachelor of General Studies (1978) degrees from the University of Michigan.

Text by Jeff Dodd, College of Arts and Sciences Marketing Officer

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