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KU News Release

August 10, 2005
Contact: Dan Lara, University Relations, (785) 864-8855.

Kerr named first distinguished professor at School of Education

LAWRENCE -- The University of Kansas announced today that Barbara Kerr has been appointed the Williamson Family Distinguished Professor of Counseling Psychology in the School of Education's Department of Psychology and Research in Education. She is the first distinguished professor in the School of Education and will start Aug. 18.

Prior to her appointment at KU, Kerr was professor of psychology in education at Arizona State University; associate director of the Connie Belin National Center for Gifted Education at the University of Iowa; and established a guidance center for gifted youth at the University of Nebraska.

The professorship was established with a gift from Delbert L. and Barbara Ossian Williamson to the Kansas University Endowment Association. KU Endowment is an independent, non-profit organization serving as the official fund-raising and fund-management organization for the university.

Kerr earned a doctorate degree in counseling psychology in 1978 from the University of Missouri. She received a master's degree from Ohio State University in counseling psychology in 1975 and a bachelor's degree in psychology from MU in 1973.

Kerr is the author of four books: A Handbook for Counseling Gifted and Talented; Smart Girls; Smart Boys; and Letters to the Medicine Man: The Shaping of Spiritual Intelligence. She has written more than 100 articles and papers on the topic of guiding and nurturing talent. Her research ranges from case studies of inventors, artists, writers and architects to large-scale studies of students who attained the highest scores on the ACT college admissions tests.

Kerr is a member of the counseling psychology program in the Department of Psychology and Research in Education. The doctoral program in counseling psychology received initial accreditation from the American Psychological Association in 1957. Kerr and three other faculty members in the Counseling Psychology program -- Tom Krieshok, James Lichtenberg and Karen Multon -- are fellows of the American Psychological Association.

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The University of Kansas is a major comprehensive research and teaching university. University Relations is the central public relations office for KU's Lawrence campus.

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