Sandra RussDistinguished University Professor Sandra “Sandy” Russ, PhD, is the interim dean of the College of Arts and Sciences and the Louis D. Beaumont University Professor at Case Western Reserve University in Cleveland, Ohio. 

This appointment marks the second time Russ has served as interim dean of the College; she last filled the role for 13 months in the early 2000s. From 1995 through 2000, she chaired the Department of Psychology, and from 1987 to 1994, she served in the Office of the Provost, first as assistant provost and then associate provost. She also has an extensive record of faculty service at the College and university level, including two stints as Faculty Senate chair—one in the 1980s, and the other five years ago.

After joining Case Western Reserve in 1975, Russ has focused much of her research on children’s pretend play—specifically how it can affect such functions as creativity, coping and ability to understand emotions. She has authored or edited six books, and published dozens of articles in refereed academic journals. She also has been named a fellow in her academic division of the American Psychological Association, and four years ago received its Rudolf Arnheim Award for Outstanding Achievement in Psychology and the Arts.