Dean Laurence Kaptain Departs CAM After Eight Years of Leadership, Accepts Positions with CU Denver’s Office of the Provost
Co-Interim Deans Joann Brennan and Nate Thompson to Lead CAM Into the 2022 Academic YearAlice Crogan | College of Arts & Media Jun 29, 2022
As special assistant to the provost and CAM Music & Entertainment Industry Studies faculty, Kaptain will advance international education, ArtsHub Asia semester abroad programs, and the CU Denver Strategic Plan 2030.
“Serving as Dean at CU Denver, Colorado’s only public urban research university, has not only been an honor, but the high point of my career,” says Kaptain. “While I am not interested in retiring, I look forward to helping CAM and CU Denver grow in international stature.”
Kaptain has led CAM to new frontiers while serving eight years as dean. He oversaw an increase in student enrollment, faculty hires, research funding, and operating budget. Kaptain recognized the value of partnerships and positioned CAM with both creative industry and higher education powerhouses such Colorado Business Committee for the Arts and Arts Schools Network. His vision allowed for the development of numerous study abroad and global study programs—a legacy that will continue with Kaptain's work with Provost Constancio Nakuma.
Interim co-deans, Nate Thompson and Joann Brennan, will lead CAM while CU Denver conducts a national search to fill the permanent position.
Thompson, associate professor and interim chair of Film & Television, has been at CAM since 1999. He has worked in set design and construction coordination for feature films and award-winning documentaries, and worked production in venues such as the Denver Convention Center and Red Rocks Amphitheatre. Thompson is known as an adaptable and collaborative leader who advances students and faculty and their purpose in the creative arts.
“I am eager to learn how to support the individuals that comprise the college, to advance art-making that illuminates the chiaroscuro of the human condition, and to prepare CAM for new leadership,” says Thompson.
Interim co-dean Brennan is an accomplished artist, photographer, and professor. She has held roles in faculty affairs and at the Center for Faculty Development and Advancement, serving as a liaison for faculty governance bodies and supporting special projects that center on faculty success, processes, and policies. She was awarded a Guggenheim Fellowship in 2003 and a Smithsonian Fellowship from the Smithsonian Museum of American Art in 2010.
"It's exciting to come back to my CAM home," says Brennan. "I am looking forward to collaborating with our community to advance CAM in meaningful ways."
Brennan and Thompson will build on the remarkable legacy left by Kaptain, who begins his new role on July 1, 2022.