The University of Florida has named Sarasota publisher Diane McFarlin as the new dean of the College of Journalism and Communications.
McFarlin has been a journalist in the state for more than 35 years. She graduated UF in 1976 and became city editor for Sarasota’s afternoon newspaper before she was 23, according to a report in the Sarasota Herald-Tribune announcing her departure from the newsroom and her new position.
“At a time of such complexity and change, the best colleges of journalism and communications can serve as beacons,” McFarlin said in UF’s announcement. “My goal as dean will be to help elevate that role."
As publisher in Sarasota, McFarlin created a campaign that has raised millions of dollars for homeless causes. Previously, she was executive editor of the newspaper and president of the American Society of Newspaper Editors.
“I'm delighted that Diane will be the next dean of the College,” Dean John Wright, who will return to the faculty when McFarlin assumes her new position Jan. 1,” said in the university’s announcement. “She is a true visionary and proven leader who will provide effective guidance across all dimensions critical to our faculty, staff and students.”