Dixie State appoints new dean of business, communication

ST. GEORGE – Dixie State University announced last week the appointment of Dr. Kyle Wells as the new Dean of the School of Business and Communication. Wells will assume his new role on July 1, replacing the retiring Dr. Philip Lee, who had served in that capacity this academic year.

A native of St. George and Dixie College alum, Wells graduated with a bachelor’s degree in civil engineering from the University of Utah and is a licensed professional engineer. After working for several years as a consulting engineer, he returned to school and earned an MBA, specializing in finance, at the University of Arizona in 2002, and completed his doctorate of philosophy in finance at Utah in 2008.

Wells spent one year as a visiting lecturer at the University of New Mexico, teaching banking and finance before returning to Dixie State, where he is currently a professor of finance and chair of the Udvar-Hazy School of Business.

“I’m grateful for the opportunity, but I know it will be challenge,” Wells said. “We have a great group of faculty and adjuncts and I hope to continue the successes that we’ve had. My primary focus is on our pending ACBSP accreditation.

“I also have a soft spot for student placement and hope to work closely with businesses to develop opportunities for our students,” Wells said. “I’m a product of this institution and know what our students can do if given opportunities to develop professionally. Our students have gone to large companies and competed and succeeded with the best.”

Lee has been a member of the DSU business faculty for 35 years, and served two stints as chair of the Dixie’s business department, from 1987-91, and again from 1997 to 2012. In addition, he had served as associate dean of the business department.

Over his tenure at DSU, Lee has mentored hundreds of students as student advisor in the DECA/Delta Epsilon Chi organization. He has been a member of the national DECA post-secondary advisory council and served as the council’s chairperson, and has garnered Utah state and national DEX Advisor of the Year recognition. In 2010, Dr. Lee was honored with the “Outstanding Service Award,” presented by the National DECA/Delta Epsilon Chi Board of Directors at the annual DECA International Business Conference and Competition held in Louisville, Ky.

“The past 35 years at Dixie have been a wonderful experience for me in every way imaginable,” Lee said. “I have truly enjoyed my association with the students and will greatly miss their enthusiasm and the joy that comes from ‘watching the lights come on’ when they comprehend a principle.

“I feel that I have been blessed to work with some of the best and brightest people on earth and will miss the daily association with the faculty and staff and DSU,” Lee said. “I would also like to express my appreciation to the administration of DSU. They have always been encouraging and supportive in all that we have undertaken to do and have been a contributing factor in our great success with the DECA program.”

Lee earned his bachelor’s degree in business from Southern Utah University, a master’s degree in marketing/distributive education from Utah State University, and his doctorate in educational leadership from Northern Arizona University.

Submitted by Dixie State University

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