The University of Texas announced Monday that Mary Ellen Poole, dean of the San Francisco Conservatory of Music, has been appointed director of UT’s Butler School of Music and holder of the Florence Thelma Hall Centennial Chair in Music.
Poole has been dean of the San Francisco Conservatory of Music for the past 10 years. A native of Louisiana, she earned her degrees in flute performance from Baylor University and Michigan State University, and a Ph.D. in musicology from the University of Illinois at Urbana.
Poole’s appointment is effective Sept. 1.
"As dean of the San Francisco Conservatory of Music, Mary Ellen Poole put up an extraordinary leadership record, turning a very good music school into a great one," Doug Dempster, dean of UT’s college of fine arts, in a statement. "That’s exactly her charge at The University of Texas, where we’re determined to make the Butler School of Music the finest public-university music school in the country. We couldn’t have a better director for the job."
Poole replaces B. Glenn Chandler who resigned his position in 2o12 over dispute with Dempster on whether the school should part ways with the College of Fine Arts and get its own dean and other administrators. Chandler had served as the Butler School’s director since 2001 and remains a tenured faculty member.
Longtime UT faculty member and former director of the Longhorn Band Glenn Richter served as interim director.