Dr. Jeffrey R. Bibbee has been named the dean of the College of Humanities and Fine Arts at the University of Tennessee at Martin. Bibbee most recently served at the University of North Alabama, where he was the university historian in the 2022-23 school year and interim associate dean and associate dean from 2019 to 2022 for the UNA department of history. Bibbee will begin his new position June 15 and succeeds the retiring Dr. Lynn Alexander who has served as dean since 2010.
At North Alabama, Bibbee was a professor of history from 2016 through 2023, served as the chair of the department of history from 2014 to 2019, was an associate professor of history from 2012 to 2016 and was an assistant professor of history from 2008 to 2012. His specialty is 19th and 20th century British history with a focus on religion and politics, and he was the director of the UNA Centre for British Studies from 2012 through 2023. Bibbee earned his Ph.D. in history from King’s College in London, United Kingdom, in 2008.
A native of Decatur, Alabama, Bibbee earned his Bachelor of Arts and Master of Arts degrees in history from Auburn University in 1997 and 1999, respectively, and was a summa cum laude graduate.
“I’m really excited,” Bibbee said of his new position. “I enjoyed meeting the administration and the faculty and, especially, the students when I was there in March. I got a real sense of camaraderie and collaboration, and it just felt right.”
Bibbee said his position as university historian over the last year was designed to connect community stakeholders in the Muscle Shoals National Heritage area in northwestern Alabama and the university’s archives and the public history program.
“It’s to focus on projects that highlight the university’s history, and also can assist with marketing and the recruitment of students,” he said.
Dr. Stephanie Kolitsch, the UTM interim provost and senior vice chancellor for Academic Affairs, said she was happy to welcome Bibbee to the Martin campus.
“Coming from a different state, Dr. Bibbee will bring new ideas and a fresh perspective to the College of Humanities and Fine Arts,” she said. “He is already exploring first-year students’ perspectives by attending SOAR as an observer and is looking for other opportunities to expand his knowledge about UT Martin. We are excited to have him join the UT Martin family.”