Columbia University professor Malo A. Hutson will be making the move south to the University of Virginia this summer where he will join the School of Architecture as its dean effective July 1. Hutson, who is currently director of Columbia’s Urban Planning Ph.D. program in the Graduate School of Architecture, Planning and Preservation (GSAPP) and director of the school’s Urban Community and Health Equity Lab, succeeds Ila Berman, who served as dean of the UVA School of Architecture for a five-year term and will return as faculty once Hutson is installed.
“I’m thrilled to be joining the School of Architecture as dean,” Hutson said in a statement. “The A-School faculty and students are at the cutting edge of research, teaching, and creative practice. Collectively the A-School community is working to address some of the most pressing issues facing our society, ranging from climate resilience to environmental health and racial justice.”
Hutson comes to UVA Architecture with an extensive background working to solve the aforementioned issues—climate resilience, environmental health, and racial justice—and is, per a UVA news release, a “nationally and internationally recognized expert in the areas of community development, environmental justice and urban health” whose “collaborations across disciplines in both the academic and professional sphere place him at the nexus of environmental, architectural and urban equity studies.”
In addition to teaching within GSAPP’s Urban Planning Ph.D. program, Hutson was a faculty member of both the Earth Institute and the Columbia Population Research Center, where he co-led the urbanism group, as well as director of project development for Columbia World Projects. As noted by UVA in its announcement of Hutson’s appointment, he helped “build teams and develop a portfolio of projects in excess of $100 million with wide strategic scope and significant social impact, including several projects sited in Virginia” through his leadership role in the latter university-wide initiative.
What’s more, Hutson served as a member of the Provost’s Advisory Council for the Enhancement of Faculty Diversity and co-led GSAPP’s faculty-led Anti-Racism Task Force.
“In the past years, Professor Hutson’s contributions across [the Graduate School of Architecture, Planning, and Preservation] and Columbia University have been nothing less than tremendous,” said Amale Andraos, dean of GSAPP. “He has made a lasting impact on many of us as a colleague and as an inspiring teacher and adviser to our students. While we are saddened to see him leave, I am thrilled he will be joining you in this leadership position, which no doubt will be transformative, with positive ripples across our disciplines and fields.”
Before coming to Columbia, Hutson, a native of Los Angeles, held a tenured appointment as Chancellor’s Professor of City and Regional Planning in the Department of City and Regional Planning at the College of Environmental Design, University of California at Berkeley. While at Berkeley, he chaired the Urban Studies program and served as the associate director of the Institute of Urban and Regional Development. Hutson is also a graduate of UC Berkeley, having received his Bachelor of Arts in sociology in 1997 from the university and a Master of City Planning in Regional and Economic Development in 1999. Hutson earned his Ph.D. in Urban and Regional Planning from the School of Architecture and Planning at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in 2006 and went on secure a Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Health & Scholar postdoctoral fellowship at the University of Michigan’s School of Public Health.
In addition to the Robert Wood Foundation Health & Scholar fellowship, Hutson has been bestowed with numerous fellowships and awards for his community development- and urban equity-focused research, including the Salzburg Global Fellowship and a pair of Mellon Fellowships.
“Malo brings a depth and breadth of experience and scholarly accomplishment that stand out in his field,” said UVA Provost Liz Magill in a statement. “Just as important is his vision for the future of UVA Architecture and its ability to create solutions for real-world problems. Malo has continuously demonstrated strategic brilliance in connecting architecture and urban planning to other disciplines for the benefit of his community, his students and his profession.”