New Dean for PSFA

Janis McKay has been appointed dean of the College of Professional Studies and Fine Arts, effective July 3.

April 11, 2023

Janis McKayJanis McKay has been appointed Dean of the College of Professional Studies and Fine Arts, effective July 3. 

McKay joins SDSU from the College of Fine Arts at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas (UNLV), where she served for 28 years. She was a full professor of Music, specializing in bassoon and music history, and became vice dean of the college in 2020. In that role, she led seven unique units: Architecture, Art, Dance, Entertainment Engineering Design, Film, Music, and Theatre. Her responsibilities included managing college operations, facilities, budgets, curriculum, and personnel, while also leading various initiatives within the college. McKay was the chair of the UNLV Faculty Senate in the 2019-20 academic year and served from 2017-2021 on the Faculty Senate Executive Council. 

“I invite our campus community to join me in congratulating McKay on her new role,” said SDSU Provost Salvador Hector Ochoa. 

McKay also has been a professional classical musician for 36 years. She has played bassoon and contrabassoon in multiple orchestras and performed with numerous ensembles and world-renowned musical artists. Her solo album “Dark Wind” was released in 2017 and she is the author of Played Out on the Strip: The Rise and Fall of Las Vegas Casino Bands. 

“I would like to thank Heather Canary for serving as interim dean of the College of Professional Studies and Fine Arts, lending her leadership and strategic abilities to ensure the continuity of the college’s efforts in support of our students, faculty, and staff. She has been an excellent leader and partner in moving the College forward, and she has our sincere appreciation,” Ochoa said. 

Ochoa also said he is grateful to those who served on the search committee, chaired by Nathian Shae Rodriguez, associate professor of journalism and media studies. 

Committee members were: Arlette Baljon, associate professor of physics; Stephen Brotebeck, professor of theatre, television, and film; Niyi Coker, professor of theatre, television, and film and school director; Shawn Flanigan, professor of public affairs; Arian Khaefi, associate professor of music; Shannon Kitelinger, associate professor of music; Madhavi McCall, professor of political science and associate vice president for Curriculum, Assessment and Accreditation; Margarita Machado-Casas, professor of dual language and English learner education and department chair; Chantel Paul, administrative analyst/specialist in school of art and design; Rachael Record, associate professor of communication; and SDSU students Alondra Hernandez and Noemi Portillo.