Joel Towers became dean of Parsons in 2009. He previously served as dean of Parsons' School of Design Strategies. Joel came to Parsons in 2004 as an associate professor of Architecture and Sustainable Design, to lead the division’s sustainability initiatives. In 2006, he became the inaugural director of the New School’s Tishman Environment and Design Center and an associate provost for Environmental Studies. Before joining The New School, he taught in Columbia University’s Graduate School of Architecture, Planning and Preservation. A practicing architect for the past two decades, he is a leader in the field of environmental research, drawing on disciplines ranging from design conceptualization to construction methodology to urban design. In 1992 he co-founded Sislian, Rothstein and Towers (SR+T), a firm that continues to extend the realm of traditional practice into construction, materials, development, real estate development, and sustainable design. Joel received his Master of Architecture from Columbia University and his BS in Architecture from the University of Michigan.