Norma Rees, 83, a former dean of the Graduate Center, died on July 6, 2013. An expert on language acquisition and language disorders in children, she taught at Queens and Hunter Colleges and served as executive officer of the GC’s doctoral program in speech and hearing sciences from 1972 to 1974, after which she became the associate dean of graduate studies. She then served as dean of graduate studies from 1976 until her retirement in 1983, when she was designated Professor Emeritus.
Rees was president of American Speech-Language-Hearing Association from 1979 to 1980. From 1990 to 2006 she was president of California State University–East Bay, formerly Cal State Hayward, where she helped pioneer the university’s engineering and biotechnology program as well as overseeing $70 million in construction and other physical improvements to the campus in Hayward. She also expanded the satellite campus in Concord.
Rees was born and raised in New York City. A graduate of Queens College (B.A.) and Brooklyn College (M.A.) in speech pathology and audiology, Dr. Rees earned her Ph.D. in speech at New York University in 1959.