Heather Coltman 2021 image


Provost and Senior Vice President
Contact Info

Provost and Senior Vice President
For Academic Affairs

A solo and collaborative concert pianist, Dr. Heather Coltman has performed, taught and lectured across five continents. Coltman made her performance debut in her native country of Zambia at the age of five, and immigrated to the United States in 1966. Dr. Coltman holds a Doctor of Musical Arts degree from the University of Texas, a Master of Music degree from the Mannes College of Music in New York and Bachelor of Music degree from the College-Conservatory of Music in Cincinnati. Her principal teachers included Lita Guerra, David Bar-Illan, Claude Frank and Nadia Boulanger, and she has critically acclaimed recordings on Wisdom Recordings, Klavier Records, Innova Recordings, Heng Hao Records and Lyra Productions.  

Dr. Coltman serves as the Provost and Senior Vice President for Academic Affairs at James Madison University. Leading the Division of Academic Affairs as Chief Academic Officer, she administers the growth and delivery of the university’s 135+ undergraduate and graduate programs while overseeing the division’s budget and 1500+ personnel. Provost Coltman serves as a member of the President’s Senior Leadership Team and President’s Cabinet as well as an ex-officio member of Faculty Senate, co-leading the activation of shared governance with Faculty Senate. 

Dr. Coltman increased collaboration and diversity at JMU since arriving in 2017 by leading the development of the division’s first collaborative Academic Affairs Strategic Plan, implementing the university’s first campus-wide climate study and launching the campus’ first diversity-based cohort hire. Dr. Coltman works with faculty to maintain the institution’s strong commitment to excellence in teaching and scholarship, as seen in the reclassification of James Madison University as an R2 institution. Her efforts have also resulted in the designation of JMU as an anchor institution, solidifying the vital role it plays in the local communities and economies. 

Provost Coltman serves an executive committee member of the National Association of Chief Academic Officers (ACAO) and the Council on Academic Affairs for the Association of Public and Land-Grant Universities (APLU), the SCHEV Outstanding Faculty Award adjudication committee, and the Virginia Public Media Association. 

From 2011-17, she served as Dean of the Dorothy F. Schmidt College of Arts and Letters at Florida Atlantic University. From 2013-16, she led the effort to develop a robust university initiative in “Peace, Justice and Human Rights.” After joining the faculty of FAU in 1993, she served as chair of the Department of Music as well as the Director of Keyboard Studies and the Artistic Director of the College Chamber Music Series. Dr. Coltman was also the founder of the TOPS piano camp, which had 3,000 alumni in its over 25 years of operation.   

Dr. Coltman also holds an academic appointment as a professor in the JMU School of Music.  

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