Menu

College of Fine Arts Dean Scott A. Sullivan, 1947-2019

Sullivan had a passion for art history and always looked for new sources of knowledge.

Photo by Glen E. Ellman

Photo by Glen E. Ellman

College of Fine Arts Dean Scott A. Sullivan, 1947-2019

Sullivan had a passion for art history and always looked for new sources of knowledge.

Scott A. Sullivan, who retired as dean of the College of Fine Arts in 2016, died Feb. 21.

“Scott was smart, organized, and he had a wicked sense of humor,” said Carol Clark, his friend of 47 years. “He was fiercely loyal to his family and his friends, and that was something I valued a lot in his character.”

Sullivan had a keen eye for noticing things, appreciating them and sharing knowledge with others. “I think that’s what made him a good teacher,” Clark said.

Professionally, “he was challenging; he was thoughtful; he would keep you on your toes. He was frank and very much to the point,” said Andrew Schoolmaster, dean of the AddRan College of Liberal Arts and Sullivan’s close friend for around 30 years. “Very genuine and sincere in his beliefs on issues.”

Leo Munson, retired associate provost, said Sullivan remodeled the Walsh Center for Performing Arts’ Scenic Studio — which most of the university community never sees — and led the renovation of Erma Lowe Hall. Both decisions, Munson said, advanced students’ academic learning.

“His management style was to listen to those people who reported to him, hear what their needs were and then try to solve their needs,” Munson said. “Scott listened; he got behind it, and it got done.”

Sullivan also was influential in enhancing TCU’s reputation.

“Two hallmarks about him stand out: his professional leadership of the college, and the promotion of fine and performing arts — both in the university and in the community,” said Larry Adams ’66 MA, emeritus associate provost for academic affairs. “He was active in leading the college in different directions — good directions.”

Traveling was a passion for Sullivan and his wife of 48 years, Joan. The couple visited numerous countries. “He wanted to see the art that he studied. He just enjoyed everything in a country,” Joan said. “We were each other’s best friends and he was my soul mate.”

— Trisha Spence