John Milbauer appointed School of Music dean


Courtesy of Newsline, photo submitted by Mindi Acosta

John Milbauer will serve as the dean of DePaul’s School of Music, effective July 1.

John Milbauer will serve as the DePaul School of Music dean beginning July 1, according to Newsline.

Milbauer, appointed to the position by DePaul Provost Salma Ghanem, is currently serving as the associate dean for faculty affairs in the College of Fine Arts at the University of Arizona. 

He is also a Steinway Artista title created by Steinway & Sons that names “only the best pianists of his or her time” and gives them their own Steinway piano to perform on — and has recently performed in China, Brazil, Colombia, Costa Rica, Mexico, Spain, Switzerland and Japan as well as throughout the United States,” according to the University of Arizona.

Newsline highlighted that Ghanem chose Milbauer for his background in leadership regarding “diversity, equity and inclusion, mission-driven development, and strategic planning.” His work “managing retention, promotion and tenure processes for over 150 faculty, including mentoring faculty in purpose-driven career development” at the University of Arizona made a top choice as well, according to Newsline. 

Ghanem said Milbauer’s passion for music education and his background in leadership in arts education made him an ideal candidate for the role. 

“He also brings an impressive background in public administration and management that, combined with his other strengths, will be helpful in achieving the School of Music’s goals over the coming years,” Ghanem told Newsline.

Milbauer told Newsline that he is thrilled and honored to serve as dean of the School of Music. 

“[DePaul is] an institution clearly poised for growth,” Milbauer said. “By centering imagination in our work, by exploring the intersection of access and excellence, and by developing a culture of artist-citizens who are endlessly curious about their engagement with society, we have the potential to lead the advancement of the musical arts in a more just world.”

Milbauer told Newsline and the dean search selection committee that he will work to “propel the School of Music forward through strategic visioning and priorities built on the school’s existing excellence, develop financial opportunities for increased funding support for scholarships and be a dedicated advocate for attracting top student talent.” 

He said he is “a tireless supporter of diversity, equity, inclusion and social justice” and shows it by supporting many diversity, equity and inclusion initiatives and finding new ways to promote inclusivity and being more welcoming to students, faculty, staff and School of Music supporters. 

Since November 2022, Dana Hall has been serving as the School of Music’s interim dean. He will continue to serve in this role until June 30.

“During his time as interim dean, Dana has done a remarkable job leading the School of Music since his appointment,” Ghanem said. “Having been a student, faculty member and administrator in the School of Music since 2002, he has been a stabilizing force for the school during this time of transition, and I thank him for his work.”

With Milbauer’s appointment, the Jarvis College of Computing and Digital Media remains the sole college at DePaul to remain “dean-less.”