May 07, 2004

William R. Devenport named department chair

by Pete Rosenbery

CARBONDALE, Ill. -- Associate professor William R. Devenport, interim chair of Southern Illinois University Carbondale's Department of Information Management Systems for the past 14 months, has been named permanent chair.

The appointment requires Board of Trustees' approval.

The department is part of the College of Applied Sciences and Arts, and interim Dean Paul D. Sarvela said Devenport "has served with distinction as interim chair.""While in this position I believe we have a lot of great initiatives under way," said Devenport. "One of my first jobs was hiring five new faculty and I am now in the process of mentoring and supporting them."

"His experience and record as an educator, university administrator and established IMS consultant in the private sector make Professor Devenport a very valuable individual whom we're pleased to count among the college's impressive array of assets," Sarvela said.

Devenport began his teaching career in 1975, and started at SIUC as a graduate assistant in 1982. He received a bachelor's degree in industrial education from Illinois State University in 1975, and a master's degree in vocational education from SIUC in 1985.

Devenport's goals for the department include increasing productivity.

"We have several research initiatives under way. We have received grants this year that we are working with," he said.

The department has 27 faculty members and about 350 students. There are currently two undergraduate degree programs -- electronic systems technologies and a specialization in electronics management, and information systems technologies and a specialization in captioning.

Devenport says he wants to see both programs grow, and is casting an eye toward potential masters-level programs. He also wants to continue to increase "the positive morale of the faculty and staff we have here."

Devenport loves the time he has spent as the interim chair.

"Mostly, I really enjoy the people I work with. They make it easy," he said.

A certified electronics technician, Devenport is a broadly recognized expert in automated production programming. His book, "Industrial Control," co-authored with M. Hebel, is currently in its second edition. A second book, "Experiments for Industrial Electronics," authored solely by Devenport, is in its fourth edition.

Devenport and his wife, Vickie, live in Makanda, and have two children.

For more information, contact Devenport at 618/453-7270.