Vice President for Academic Affairs Muriel E. Poston is Pitzer College’s 13th dean of faculty.
A plant biologist with an interest in environmental studies, Poston served as the dean of the faculty at Skidmore College from 2005-10 and as acting vice president of academic affairs from 2010-11. Before coming to Pitzer in summer 2012, Poston was on loan from Skidmore College as the division director for Human Resource Development Division in the Education and Human Resources Directorate at National Science Foundation (NSF), where she led eight NSF programs that focused on supporting minority-serving institutions and under-represented groups in science, technology, engineering and mathematics.
Poston was a faculty member in the biology/botany department at Howard University in Washington DC for more than 20 years. She has also served as the deputy division director for the NSF’s Division of Biological Infrastructure.
Her expertise in plant systematics, environmental law and environmental policy has taken her on research expeditions across the globe from Namibia to Suriname. Poston has received myriad research and academic grants including ones from the NSF, the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences and the Smithsonian Institution. She has authored dozens of articles in publications such as Journal of Women and Minorities in Science and Engineering, Plant Science Bulletin and ACADEME. Poston currently serves on the Board of Directors for the American Institute of Biological Sciences and the Advisory Committee for Project Kaleidoscope.
Poston earned her BA from Stanford University, and her MA and PhD degrees from the University of California at Los Angeles. She also holds a JD degree from the University of Maryland.