Andrews receives award for distinguished service to the College

From left, Arts and Sciences Foundation Board President James Alexandre, Bill Andrews and Dean Karen Gil. (photo by Mary Lide Parker.)

William “Bill” Andrews, the senior associate dean for the fine arts and humanities, has received the William F. Little Award for Distinguished Service to the College of Arts and Sciences.

Andrews was presented the award at the spring 2012 meeting of the Arts and Sciences Foundation board of directors.

The award was established in 2009 by the College to recognize the distinguished service of Bill Little, and to honor a faculty or staff member who, in Little’s footsteps, has served the College with extraordinary distinction. Little was a member of the College faculty for more than 40 years. He was a distinguished chemist and chair of the chemistry department, a former vice president of the UNC system and a visionary leader who helped guide the development of the Research Triangle Park and Research Triangle Institute. He also was one of the founders of the Arts and Sciences Foundation.

Andrews, the E. Maynard Adams Professor of English, will step down in June as senior associate dean, a post he has held since 2005.

Dean Karen Gil called Andrews “a highly distinguished scholar and a tireless leader for the College” who “earned the trust of his colleagues through his reputation for fairness, his timely decision-making, his willingness to listen, his tireless planning and his unwavering focus on supporting students, faculty and department chairs.”

Among his accomplishments as senior associate dean for the fine arts and humanities, Gil cited Andrews’:

  • Instrumental role in the development of a new and innovative Academic Plan for the University;
  • Ability to develop imaginative approaches to difficult challenges, including unprecedented budget reductions;
  • Recruitment and retention of superlative faculty;
  • Skills as a fund-raiser, bringing in millions of dollars to the College;
  • Development of a promotion track for College lecturers;
  • Advancement of digital humanities which will set a new standard for teaching and learning with technology.

Andrews served as department chair from 1997 to 2001. During his tenure as senior associate dean, he also served as a member of the Arts and Sciences Foundation board of directors.

Andrews earned his master’s and Ph.D. degrees from UNC and was awarded an honorary doctor of letters in 2007 from his undergraduate alma mater Davidson College. He has been on the UNC faculty since 1996. A renowned scholar of African-American literature and a leading expert on African-American slave narratives, he has 40 books and numerous other publications to his credit, including two books published in 2011 alone.

For a feature profile on Andrews, visit