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Notable Faculty

Barbara Butts Williams, PhD


Dr. Barbara Butts Williams is Executive Dean, External Relations & Partnerships and Dean Emeritus, Business at Capella University. Since joining Capella in 2002, Dr. Butts Williams has served in several leadership positions including; Dean, School of Business, Interim Dean, School of Business and Technology, Associate Dean, Director of Graduate Programs and Director of the MBA Program. Dr. Butts Williams has also served as the Dean, School of Education at Capella University. Dr. Butts Williams' professional experience spans over four decades including the public, private and higher education sectors. She previously served as the President of Growth Partners Consulting, a firm she founded to provide strategic planning, talent assessment, change management, and organizational development to small and medium sized organizations. She also served as director of executive programs for the University of Michigan's Ross School of Business and on the executive education advisory council of the University of Minnesota's Carlson School of Management. Her corporate experience includes leadership positions at The St. Paul Companies (now Travelers), Control Data Corporation (now Ceridian), and Wilson Learning Corporation. Currently, Dr. Butts Williams serves on the Board of Directors for Allina Health, Metropolitan Economic Development Association (Meda) and as a Commissioner on Minnesota's Sports Facilities Authority (MSFA) Board, overseeing the construction of the billion dollar multipurpose U.S. Bank Stadium in downtown Minneapolis. Butts Williams earned a Master of Arts in Business and Leadership from Hamline University, and Master of Arts in Organization Development, and Doctor of Philosophy in Human and Organizational Systems from Fielding Graduate University.

Melissa L. Zgola, MS

Faculty Chair

Melissa Zgola joined Capella University in 2007 as an adjunct faculty member for the School of Technology and became a core faculty member in 2008, teaching courses in networking technology and software architecture. In 2012, she was named faculty chair for the Bachelor of Science in Information Technology program in the School of Business and Technology and served in that role until 2014 when she became faculty chair for the Master of Science in Information Systems and Technology Management and the MS in Analytics programs.

Prior to joining Capella, Melissa spent several years as an online facilitator, instructor, and program director with The Art Institute Online, the Pittsburgh Technical Institute and ITT Technical Institute. She also served as an engineering technician for the Department of Labor, and senior system analyst for the University of Pittsburgh. She holds a BA in Psychology and an MA in Counseling from West Virginia University, and a MS in Information Science from the University of Pittsburgh.