DeShazo has served in a variety of leadership roles including as chair and vice-chair of the UCLA Department of Public Policy. He is a professor of public policy with joint appointments in the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, the Department of Urban Planning, and the Institute of the Environment and Sustainability.
“Many of the challenges and opportunities we face as a society require the sort of public policy leadership that only world class schools like the LBJ School can provide. Through its teaching and research, the LBJ School is positioned to make an even greater impact moving forward and I’m thrilled to welcome JR as the school’s next dean,” said UT Austin President Jay Hartzell. “JR’s leadership experience at UCLA will help strengthen the amazing work already happening in the LBJ School as it continues to attract top talent, educate future leaders and policy makers, and ultimately, serve Texas and the world.”
In his leadership roles, DeShazo has prioritized faculty research and the student experience. He led campuswide interdisciplinary research efforts, enhanced training and mentorship of students, and spearheaded efforts to better support underrepresented faculty members and students. DeShazo was also responsible for fostering strategic partnerships with leading organizations, including the Congressional Hispanic Caucus Institute and the Ralph J. Bunche Center for African American Studies.
“I am honored to lead the LBJ School with its rich intellectual and policy legacy,” said DeShazo. “We not only educate the nation’s brightest students who have answered the call to public service but also produce research that guides society’s adoption of policies that aim to enhance the freedom, opportunity and welfare enjoyed by all.”
DeShazo is a distinguished scholar who focuses on clean technology policies, policy design to enhance environmental equity, methods for valuing changes in environmental quality, and the performance of public agencies. Through his research and appointments, he has served as a policy adviser to international organizations such as the World Bank, the Asian Development Bank and the United Nations, as well as federal agencies such as the National Science Foundation, the Department of Energy, the Department of Transportation and the Environmental Protection Agency.
DeShazo earned a doctorate in urban planning from Harvard University; a master’s degree in development economics from Oxford University, where he was a Rhodes scholar; and a bachelor’s degree from the College of William & Mary.
DeShazo will serve as the 12th dean of the LBJ School, a public policy school nationally ranked at No. 7 that offers graduate degrees in domestic and global affairs. Founded in 1970 by President Lyndon B. Johnson, the school has 4,500 alumni worldwide.