Senior Associate Dean
As Senior Associate Dean, Kecia Thomas manages the Faculty Affairs functions of the college which includes recruitment and hiring, promotion and tenure, personal and professional leaves, and faculty leadership development. Kecia also has oversight of the college’s diversity and inclusion strategy in addition to serving as the college’s liaison to the Franklin Faculty Senate. Lastly, Kecia provides support to her home Franklin division, the Social and Behavioral Sciences, which include the departments of Anthropology, Communication Studies, Geography, Psychology, and Sociology.
In addition to Kecia’s role in the Dean’s Office, she is a Professor of Industrial/Organizational (I/O) Psychology and African-American Studies and the founding director of the Center for Research and Engagement in Diversity (RED).
As a scholar, Kecia is an expert in the psychology of workplace diversity. Her research and practice focus on the issues of strategic diversity recruitment, supporting diversity in STEM workplaces, and understanding the career experiences of high potential women; especially women of color. She is the author of numerous peer-reviewed articles and book chapters as well as the textbook Diversity Dynamics in the Workplace. She served as editor of Diversity Resistance in the Workplace and co-editor of Diversity Ideologies in Organizations and special ‘workplace diversity’ issues of the Journal of Career Development and the Cultural Diversity and Ethnic Minority Psychology journal. Her research has been funded by federal agencies, for-profit and non-profit institutions, as well as corporate foundations. She is an elected Fellow of both the Society for Industrial and Organizational Psychology and the American Psychological Association, and a recipient of the Janet Chusmir Award for Distinguished Service from the Gender & Diversity in Organizations (GDO) division of the Academy of Management.
Dr. Thomas earned a B.A. in Psychology and Spanish from Bucknell University and her M.S. and Ph.D. in Industrial-Organizational Psychology from the Pennsylvania State University. She is also a graduate of the HERS Management Institute at Wellesley College and the SEC Academic Leadership Development Program. She began her career at UGA as a faculty member in 1993.