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Fairfield-Sonn Named Barney Dean
“Jim Fairfield-Sonn has had a terrific year as interim dean, and I look forward to working with him as he leads the Barney School to new heights,” said Harrison. “Jim is a noted scholar of management. It will be fun to watch him turn theory into practice.”
Fairfield-Sonn said, “I was extremely fortunate when I got the opportunity to come here in 1982, and now I have a wonderful opportunity to contribute to the Barney School and its role at the University of Hartford and in the Greater Hartford community. I am looking forward to continuing to enhance the school’s ‘career-ready’ focus for our students.”
Fairfield-Sonn succeeds Corine Norgaard, who stepped down as dean on May 31, 2004, after leading the Barney School for eight years.
During his tenure as interim dean, Fairfield-Sonn accomplished a number of important goals for the Barney School, said Randall. “Student recruitment for both undergraduates and graduates resulted in higher enrollment in both fall and spring semesters. He is actively involved in preparing for AACSB International reaccreditation. He also worked with the Development Office to cultivate new donors and develop prospects for the school, resulting in a 32 percent increase in general gifts to the Campaign of Commitment over the previous year,” Randall said. “A highlight of the fundraising was a $200,000 scholarship from the Starr Foundation to recruit and retain students interested in pursuing a career in insurance or finance.”
In addition, this year the Barney School launched a new Institute for Entrepreneurship and Economic Development. Barney also received two significant awards: an Exemplary Chapter award from Beta Gamma Sigma, the business honorary society, and a regional award for Barney’s SIFE (Students in Free Enterprise) team, which now goes on to the national competition.
Fairfield-Sonn earned his bachelor’s degree at the University of Massachusetts, his master’s degree at Cornell University’s School of Industrial and Labor Relations, and his doctorate at Yale University.
He was chair of the management department from 1987 to 1990, director of the Executive MBA program from 1993 to 1995, and chair of Barney’s Promotion and Tenure Committee from 2002 to 2004. In 1999 he won the school’s first Outstanding Teacher of the Year award. He is also listed in Who’s Who in American Education and Who’s Who in America.
Fairfield-Sonn has done consulting work during the past 20 years for some of the country’s major corporations and organizations, such as IBM, BASF, UTC, The Hartford Insurance Group and Yale University, and is the author of Corporate Culture and the Quality Organization.