College of Humanities, Arts, and Social Sciences

About the Dean

About the Dean

Meet CHASS Dean Daryle Williams

Daryle Williams (he/him/his) serves as UC Riverside’s Dean of the College of Humanities, Arts, and Social Sciences. His academic training is in Latin American history with a specialization in modern Brazil. Born in San Francisco and raised in San Diego County, Williams spent most of his academic career on the East Coast and internationally. The move to UCR in September 2021 has been a homecoming that renews his enduring belief in the California Dream and the promise of the UC System.

Williams earned an undergraduate history degree and certificate in Latin American studies from Princeton University and a master's and Ph.D. in history from Stanford University. He has been awarded grants and fellowships from the National Endowment for the Humanities, Fulbright, the Ford and Rockefeller foundations, and the Maryland Institute for Technology in the Humanities.

From 1994 to 2021, Williams served on the History Department faculty and then as Associate Dean for Faculty Affairs in the College of Arts and Humanities at the University of Maryland. At College Park, Williams also held positions as graduate studies director and associate director of the David C. Driskell Center for the Study of the African Diaspora. He has been a visiting scholar at the Universidade Federal do Rio de Janeiro and Stanford.

Williams and his husband, Steven, live in historic downtown Riverside.


Williams’ teaching and scholarship focus on modern Latin America, especially nineteenth- and twentieth-century Brazilian history. Most recently, his research has largely involved Atlantic slavery and emancipation in Brazil, with a strong focus on the methods and tools of the digital humanities. He is editor of the Journal of Slavery and Data Preservation and has taken the lead on several collaborative initiatives about enslaved peoples’ experiences and black digital humanities, supported by more than $7 million in awards from The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation and the National Endowment for the Humanities, among others.

With the lead support of the Mellon Foundation, his work to build the online database has won widespread national media attention since it was launched on Dec. 1, 2020, including an interview on NPR and articles in National GeographicSmithsonian magazine, and the Washington Post

Williams was also lead editor of The Rio de Janeiro Reader: Politics, History, Culture (Duke University Press, 2015) and serves as Area Editor (Brazil pre-1888) on the Dictionary of Caribbean and Afro-Latin American Biography (Oxford University Press). Single-author publications include Culture Wars in Brazil: The First Vargas Regime, 1930-1945 (Duke, 2001), winner of the American Historical Association's John Edwin Fagg prize, and several articles and book chapters on 19th- and 20th-century Brazilian cultural and social history.

Contact the Dean

Meetings/Event Requests

To schedule a meeting or request Dean Williams at an event, please contact Summer Espinoza, Executive Assistant to the Dean, at or 951-827-3572.


For media interviews with Dean Williams or speaking requests, please contact Jeff Girod, Assistant Dean of CHASS Marketing & Communications, at or 951-827-4333.