Spector Takes New Role; Fair to Serve as Interim VP for Diversity

Dr. Magaly Spector

Dr. Magaly Spector

Dr. Magaly Spector, vice president for Diversity and Community Engagement since 2008, will take on a new role as professor in practice and assistant to the president for strategic initiatives. Dr. George Fair, dean of the School of Interdisciplinary Studies, will serve as interim vice president for Diversity and Community Engagement.  

“I am grateful that I will continue to have the benefit of Dr. Spector’s advice and guidance and that she will remain part of the team of people who work to support and inspire members of our University family,” said UT Dallas President David E. Daniel. “Her new role ties her exceptional public and private sector experience with the University’s programmatic needs.”

Awareness of the importance of diversity and the University’s commitment to supporting diversity “has been exponentially raised under Dr. Spector’s leadership,” Daniel said.

Spector launched the Office of Diversity and Community Engagement, and founded the Diversity Lecture Series, the Diversity Scholarship Program, the Faculty Mentoring Program, the Diversity Awards Gala and numerous other initiatives. Last fall, she received the 2013 Materials Research Society “Woody” Award for her outstanding leadership as chair of its Diversity Committee for the creation of new programs and initiatives that significantly impacted its mission.

Dr. George Fair

Dr. George Fair

“A major goal of my life has been to increase and enhance the educational opportunities of college students pursuing careers in science and engineering, and in particular underrepresented minorities and women,” Spector said. “I strongly believe that the diversity of our people is a source of innovation and competitive advantage.”

Spector, a physicist and engineer by training, was also a national Cuban chess champion. She helped facilitate a 2009 international chess match between UT Dallas students and college students in Havana. Spector, who immigrated to the U.S. from Cuba in 1980, described the match as a way to facilitate understanding between the two countries.  

Daniel expressed thanks to both Spector and Fair.

“I believe more strongly than ever that building the diversity of our student body, faculty and staff is essential for UT Dallas as the University progresses toward its goal of being counted among the great research universities of this nation. Our success as an institution hinges on our ability to recognize and celebrate differences,” Daniel said. “I know Dr. Fair shares my commitment to this principle, and he will work to ensure that the Office of Diversity and Community Engagement continues to progress during this period of transition.”

Media Contact: The Office of Media Relations, UT Dallas, (972) 883-2155, [email protected].