Dr. Joanne Liebman Matson, professor of rhetoric and writing, started off her two-year term as the new president of the Faculty Senate and University Assembly with the first Faculty Senate meeting of the new school year on Aug. 26.
“I am excited to participate in making UA Little Rock better and helping the university continue to recover from the pandemic,” Matson said. “This will be a good finish to my academic career because I do plan to retire after my two-year term as Faculty Senate president.”
Matson has served multiple terms on the Faculty Senate since the 1980s. She’s been a continuous member since 2012 and has served as vice president since 2013. Over the summer, Matson joined 21 other faculty senate leaders from across the country in Houston to discuss national shared governance issues during a meeting of the National Council of Faculty Senates.
“One of the things I’d like to do this year is reach out to Faculty Senate presidents across the state,” she said. “I hope to reinvigorate a commitment across campus on the importance of shared governance in faculty and curriculum issues.”
Matson has been a part of UA Little Rock for nearly four decades when she joined the Department of English in 1983. She served as the freshman composition coordinator from 1986 to 1992, when she made a move to the provost’s office to serve as the associate vice chancellor for academic affairs.
In 2001, Matson returned to the Department of Rhetoric and Writing where she has been teaching full time ever since. Earlier this year, she donated $25,000 to create an endowed scholarship for rhetoric and writing students. Matson is also a peer reviewer for the Higher Learning Commission and teaches Sunday School at Temple B’nai Israel.