Office of the Dean

Dean of the College

Hill, Lena

Lena Hill
Dean of the College and Professor of English and Africana Studies
Simpson House

Lena Hill was appointed Dean of the College in 2018. She is a Professor of English and Africana Studies. She received her bachelor's from Howard University, her Ph.D. from Yale University and completed postdoctoral work at Duke University.Dean Hill's scholarship and teaching focus on African American literature and visual culture, and she is known internationally as a scholar of Ralph Ellison. In addition to publishing numerous articles and essays, she authored Visualizing Blackness and the Creation of the African American Literary Tradition (Cambridge, 2014), co-edited Invisible Hawkeyes: African Americans at the University of Iowa during the Long Civil rights Era (University of Iowa Press, 2016), and co-authored Ralph Ellison's Invisible Man: A Reference Guide (Greenwood, 2008). She has served on various boards and is currently a member of the Modernist Language Association Publications Committee.As the Dean of the College, Lena has prioritized faculty mentoring and development, the recruitment and retention of diverse faculty, support and growth of interdisciplinary programs, and department and program chairs leadership development. She is a passionate advocate for the liberal arts, sciences and the humanities and as the chief academic officer of the College, she is focused on working with faculty to deliver a dynamic academic experience to students that prepares them to flourish after graduating from W&L.She and her husband Michael, a W&L Professor of Africana Studies and English, live in Lexington with their two children.

Associate Deans of the College

LaRiviere, Fred

Fred LaRiviere
Associate Dean of the College, Academic Affairs and Associate Professor of Chemistry and Biochemistry
Simpson House

Associate Dean LaRiviere received his B.A. in Chemistry and Biochemistry from Clark University, his Ph.D. in Biochemistry from the University of Colorado, and completed postdoctoral work at Brandeis University and Colby College. He came to W&L in 2006 and has taught general chemistry, biochemistry I and II, and a spring term forensic science course. His research lab studies mechanisms of ribosome quality control and translation.As Associate Dean of Academic Affairs, he focuses on supporting students for academic success, collaborating when appropriate with the Office of Student Affairs. He also oversees curricular matters and serves as the Vice Chair of the Committee on Courses and Degrees. He directs faculty development programs including the mentoring cohort for new faculty, summer research collaborative grants, manuscript completion grant program, teacher-scholar cohorts and mini-grants. Associate Dean LaRiviere collaborates with Dean Hill on a range of strategic priorities.

Lucy-Speidel, Beth

Beth Lucy-Speidel
Associate Dean of the College, Administrative Affairs
Simpson House

Associate Dean Lucy-Speidel received her B.S. degree from SUNY Empire State College, her Master of Science degree from Eastern University and her Master of Arts from Marymount University. She joined the Dean's Office in 2019. As the Associate Dean of Administrative Affairs, she oversees budget planning and management, space planning and facilities, compliance and HR guidance as well as the Dean's Office management and staff development. She partners with faculty in fiscal and budgetary matters as well as space and facilities. She works closely with staff across the college to ensure smooth operations and meeting of faculty needs. She also collaborates with Dean Hill on strategic priorities.Associate Dean Lucy-Speidel currently resides outside of Woodstock, VA with her husband. They have four sons.


Garrett, Virginia (Jinky)

Virginia (Jinky) Garrett
Executive Assistant and Faculty Affairs Specialist
Simpson House

Jinky partners with both Dean Hill and Associate Dean LaRiviere in all matters related to faculty and academic matters, including searches and hiring in the College, academic programs including teacher-scholar cohorts, mini-grants, faculty support programs, summer research grants, department and program external reviews and assessments as well as other faculty related matters.

Rothenberger, Michelle

Michelle Rothenberger
Executive Assistant and Administrative Affairs Specialist
Simpson House

Michelle is responsible for Courses and Degrees administration and manages scheduling for Associate Dean Beth Lucy-Speidel and supports her expansive portfolio of administrative matters. Please contact her regarding capital, operating and salary budgets, faculty conference travel, and contracts and purchase requisitions. In addition, Michelle oversees scheduling for Fellowships Director Matthew Loar and supports the Comparative Literature program.

Saacke, Kate

Kate Saacke
Administrative Assistant to the Dean
Dean of the College Office

Kate received her Bachelor of Arts in Political Science from Emory and Henry College. She started working for Washington and Lee in 2013 in the Financial Aid Office. She joined the Dean of the College office in 2019. In her role as Assistant to the Dean, Kate strategically manages the Dean's appointment and travel calendar, develops and oversees marketing and communication materials including the College Column newsletter, and plans and supervises all special events and Simpson House operations.