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William Vitek Promoted to Professor at Clarkson University

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Clarkson University President Tony Collins has announced that William Vitek has been promoted from associate professor to professor of philosophy in the School of Arts & Sciences.Viket

Vitek is the incoming chair of the Department of Humanities and Social Sciences, where he has taught for 21 years. With a B.A. and Ph.D. in philosophy from Union College and the graduate center of the City University of New York, Vitek's research and writings are focused on the intersection between social practices and the environmental, cultural, and historical contexts in which they occur.

His current focus is on the substantial cultural and social changes that will be necessary -- in our lifetimes -- to live without easy access to cheap, carbon-based energy in the form of soils, forests, oil, natural gas and coal.

He is the author of one book, Promising; the co-editor of three books: Applying Philosophy (with Terrell Ward Bynum); Rooted in the Land: Essays on Community and Place (with Wes Jackson); and The Virtues of Ignorance: Complexity, Sustainability and the Limits of Knowledge (with Wes Jackson).

He is the author of popular essays and articles on professional ethics, community, and public life. He is currently writing a book of his own essays, titled Post-Carbon Sense. He was a 2007 visiting scholar with the Center for Humans and Nature and with The Land Institute.

Vitek co-founded and directed Clarkson's Environmental Science & Policy Program for eight years, and was associate director of Clarkson's Center for the Environment for four years. He directed Clarkson's 2001-02 sustainability initiative.

Vitek has won numerous teaching and advising awards, including the Distinguished Teaching Award and the Phalanx Award for "outstanding leadership qualities and quality participation in organizations with Clarkson and the Potsdam community."

Vitek is also a jazz pianist. He co-wrote and co-produced three collections of jazz nursery rhymes. "Rhythm and Rhymes" (1982) was awarded an American Library Association "Notable Children's Recording," and the Oppenheim Gold Seal "Best Audio Award." "Go with the Flow" (1994) was awarded Family Life's Critic's Choice Award. He currently performs with bassist Dan Gagliardi. They recently released "A Fine Line," a collection of jazz classics.

Clarkson University launches leaders into the global economy. One in six alumni already leads as a CEO, VP or equivalent senior executive of a company. Located just outside the Adirondack Park in Potsdam, N.Y., Clarkson is a nationally recognized research university for undergraduates with select graduate programs in signature areas of academic excellence directed toward the world's pressing issues. Through 50 rigorous programs of study in engineering, business, arts, sciences and health sciences, the entire learning-living community spans boundaries across disciplines, nations and cultures to build powers of observation, challenge the status quo, and connect discovery and engineering innovation with enterprise.

[News directors and editors: For more information, contact Annie Harrison, Director of Media Relations, at 315-268-6764 or]

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