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New Assistant Dean Appointed

Former Lowell tutor Ellison will lead College’s Emergency Response Team

By Joshua P. Rogers, Crimson Staff Writer

John “Jay” Ellison, previously the Allston Burr Senior Tutor of Lowell House, was appointed as the College’s new assistant dean and Secretary of the Administrative Board this summer.

One of Ellison’s new responsibilities is leading the College’s Emergency Response Team, a role which has consumed a large portion of Ellison’s time in the wake of Hurricane Katrina.

Ellison, the Senior Tutors, and the Assistant Deans of Freshmen have been working to contact Harvard students traveling in affected areas, or who hail from the Gulf Coast.

“We’ve heard from almost all students that were affected by the storm.” Ellison said last week.

Ellison will also serve as a liaison between the Ad Board and both the College administration and students.

“The Secretary of the Ad Board works with the resident deans on issues that come before the Ad Board, and advises me on all aspects of College policy,” Dean of the College Benedict H. Gross ’71 wrote in an e-mail, adding that Ellison was selected from a competitive pool of applicants from both within and outside the University.

Ellison replaces outgoing Assistant Dean of the College John O’Keefe, who left in August to assume another Dean-level position at Wellesley College.

Both O’Keefe and his predecessor David B. Fithian served as Senior Tutors before being appointed assistant dean of the College.

But Ellison said that his position on at least one key Ad Board issues—student participation on the board—is in line with that of his predecessor.

“The decision of whether to add student representation to the Ad Board is up to the Dean of the College and the Dean of FAS,” Ellison said. “Our peer institutions have expressed that students are generally harsher on their peers, but the issue is something that comes up every year.”

But Student Affairs Committee Chair Aaron D. Chadbourne ’06, who is also a Lowell House resident, said that Ellison’s appointment to fill the vacancy is in students best interest.

“Jay was advocating for a campus pub long before anyone even dreamed of trying a pub in Loker,” Chadbourne wrote in an e-mail. “He has terrific relationships with the other Senior Tutors and is quite familiar with House life.”

—Staff writer Joshua P. Rogers can be reached at

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