Dr. Kent Buchanan is starting the academic year where his predecessor left off.
Buchanan became interim provost July 1 after Dr. Susan Barber retired. He has served as assistant provost since 2012.
Barber kept Buchanan up-to-date and involved so he knew what was expected of him and what kind of decisions he would be making.
“Right off the bat I knew what was coming up and I think she kind of prepared me for that,” Buchanan said. “If I hadn’t been under her for three years, it would have been a much more difficult transition.”
A national search for the position will begin, but the date is undecided.
“I’m planning to put my name in,” Buchanan said. “Plans can change, but as of right now, I’ll probably put my name in the hat.”
Buchanan is a professor of biology and previously served as chairman of the biology department. Before coming to OCU in 2006, he was a professor at Tulane University Health Sciences Center in New Orleans.
He also has been an educator and researcher at the University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center and Oklahoma Medical Research Foundation, both in Oklahoma City.
Buchanan has served on several committees at the departmental and administrative levels. He also has served on Science Museum Oklahoma’s board of trustees for six years.
Kiarah Bates, mass communications senior, said she is sad Barber retired, but thinks Buchanan will fill the position well.
“I think Kent is a great guy, and in my three years here, I haven’t seen him do any wrong,” Bates said. “I just hope he’s prepared himself for bombarding emails now that he’s provost.”
Jason Foreman, professor of theater, was named acting assistant provost to fill Buchanan’s former position.