New Leadership

October 19, 2017
McLendon - 200

Leadership changes in the School of Education were highlighted by the appointment of Dr. Michael McLendon (right, top), dean of the School since 2015, as Baylor University’s interim provost. Subsequently, McLendon named Dr. Terrill Saxon, associate dean for research and graduate education, as the School’s interim dean.

Saxon has served in several administrative roles in the School of Education, including two stints as chair of the Department of Educational Psychology.

Terrill Saxon

“Terrill’s vast experience as a department chair and his excellent working relationships with faculty and staff enable him to lead effectively at this important moment in the School’s history,” McLendon said.

“I am honored to serve Baylor’s School of Education and our students,” Saxon said. “The faculty are among the University’s most productive researchers and effective teachers; they and our dedicated staff represent the best of Baylor. We are eager to continue the work and develop the vision Interim Provost McLendon had for the School as dean.”

Saxon’s research interests include cross-cultural studies of youth, schooling, teachers and a variety of other education-related factors. He has published numerous articles in top journals in the area of child language development and the role played by parent-child interaction behaviors and other environmental influences. Saxon is co-principal investigator for the EnAbled for College program, funded by a grant from the AT&T Foundation. The program provides one-on-one mentoring to disabled and at-risk high school students to enable them to pursue post-secondary education.

Saxon earned his BA in psychology and MS in educational psychology from Baylor and his PhD in educational psychology at the University of Kansas. He completed post-doctoral work in KU’s Infant Cognition Center before joining the Baylor School of Education faculty in 1995.

McLendon was named interim provost by President Linda A. Livingstone. He continues to serve as the Fred and Edith Hale Endowed Professor in Higher Education Leadership and Policy in the School of Education.

McLendon has been recognized as one of the nation’s leading university-based academics whose research contributes most substantially to public debates around education in the United States. He regularly advises national and state leaders on topics ranging from governance and college costs to ways of improving student success, financial sustainability and institutional effectiveness in higher education.

Before coming to Baylor, McLendon held the Harold and Annette Simmons Endowed Centennial Chair and served as the academic associate dean at Southern Methodist University’s Simmons School of Education and Human Development. Previously, he was the executive associate dean, undergraduate dean and chief of staff at Vanderbilt University’s Peabody College of Education and Human Development. McLendon earned his PhD in higher education policy from the University of Michigan, an MS in higher education from Florida State University and a BA in political science from Baylor.