Valerie B. Morris

Dean, School of the Arts

Valerie Morris - Dean School of the Arts

Office Address
66 George Street
Charleston, SC 29424

Phone: 843.953.8222

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Valerie B. Morris has been the dean of the College of Charleston’s School of the Arts since the fall of 1998. As the dean, she is the chief administrative officer of one of the College’s six undergraduate schools. Morris oversees the Departments of Art History, Music, Studio Art, and Theatre and Dance, plus programs in arts management and historic preservation and community planning. She is responsible for the production of approximately 200 events per year, and she provides leadership in cultural education, programming and scholarship for the school and the community.

Prior to joining the College, Morris was the chair of the Department of Performing Arts at American University (Washington, D.C.), where she was the founding director of that institution’s arts management program. Morris received her M.A. in speech (theatre administration emphasis) from the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, and her B.A. in speech arts from American University. Her publications include The Future of the Arts: Public Policy and Arts Research, edited with David B. Pankratz, and The Arts in a New Millennium: Research and the Arts Sector, also edited with Pankratz, as well as numerous articles in professional journals. Morris was the executive editor of the Journal of Arts Management, Law, and Society from 1982 to 1988 and 1990 to 2009.

As an organizer, session chair, panelist or presenter, Morris has participated in national and international conferences related to the arts and arts management. She also has served as an American cultural specialist for the USIA Arts America Program in Santiago, Chile; Kiev, Ukraine; and Montevideo, Uruguay.

Morris is involved in several national, state-wide and local organizations. She is a former board member of the International Council of Fine Arts Deans and the Rotary Club of Charleston, and she is a mentor for the Association of Theatre in Higher Education’s Leadership Institute. Morris is a member of the steering committee for South Carolina’s Arts in Basic Curriculum program, serves on the board of the S.C. Arts Alliance and the Arts Schools Network, and is the immediate past president of the S.C. Alliance for Arts Education. She is a board member of the Charleston Concert Association, the Charleston Jazz Initiative and the Free Enterprise Foundation. She serves as a member of the Honorary Board of Charleston Stage and as an ex-officio member of the board of Charleston Ballet Theatre and the Charleston Symphony Orchestra.


1972: M.A. in Speech, with an emphasis in Theatre Administration, University of Michigan–Ann Arbor
1968: B.A. in Speech Arts, American University

Career Highlights

1998–Present: Dean, School of the Arts, College of Charleston
1985–1998: Chair, Department of Performing Arts, American University
1974–1998: Founding Director, Arts Management Program, American University

Honors and Achievements

2010: Women of Distinction Award in Arts Education, Girl Scouts of Eastern South Carolina
2006: Honored at YWCA of Greater Charleston’s Tribute to Women of Influence Award Ceremony