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John Accordino Named Dean of the Wilder School

John Accordio, Ph.D., Wilder School dean and director of the Center for Urban and Regional Analysis (CURA)
John Accordio, Ph.D., Wilder School dean and director of the Center for Urban and Regional Analysis (CURA)

After a rigorous national search, Virginia Commonwealth University has named John Accordino, Ph.D., as dean of the L. Douglas Wilder School of Government and Public Affairs, effective March 1. Accordino has served as interim dean of the Wilder School since last July.

“John Accordino has a well-earned reputation for excellence in research, teaching and community engagement,” said VCU President Michael Rao, Ph.D. “His leadership, vision and enthusiasm will advance the Wilder School’s commitment to preparing the next generation of leaders to solve complex societal problems, advance research to inform public policy and decision-making, and collaborate with communities to enhance the quality of life.”

Accordino began his VCU career in 1986 as an assistant professor in the Department of Urban Studies and Planning. He later served as chair of the department. More recently, he was director of the Wilder School’s Center for Urban and Regional Analysis and professor of Urban and Regional Studies and Planning. Accordino directs VCU’s partnerships with the University of Messina, Italy; the University of Kaiserslautern, Germany; and Bauhaus University, Weimar, Germany.

“For the past 30 years, John Accordino has been a leader in the university and the community, as well as an accomplished scholar and teacher,” said Gail Hackett, Ph.D., provost and vice president for academic affairs. “His deep commitment to VCU, our faculty and our students provides a firm foundation on which to launch new and dynamic opportunities within the Wilder School.”

Accordino’s research interests include commercial and neighborhood revitalization methods, impacts of community revitalization policies, and comparative (U.S. and European) urban revitalization policies.

His scholarship includes books, journal articles, applied research and other publications on community and economic development policy and planning. His work with CURA has been transformative for numerous economic and community development organizations, state and local government and historic preservation and cultural organizations.

“Being named dean of the Wilder School is a great honor,” Acccordino said. “I look forward to continuing our tremendous work and developing our reputation as a premier resource for public policy expertise. We have outstanding faculty, staff and students, and we are poised and ready to elevate the Wilder School to the next level of academic distinction.”

Accordino received a B.A. in European history from the University of Rochester and a Ph.D. in urban and regional planning from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.