Appointments, Resignations, Deaths (2/17/2017)

February 12, 2017

Meredith Woo

Chief executives


Brett Bradfield, provost and vice president for academic affairs at the University of Sioux Falls, was named its president. He will take over from Mark Benedetto, who said last year that he will retire this summer. Mr. Benedetto has led the institution for 20 years.

Bruce Kusch was appointed president of Latter-Day Saints Business College. Mr. Kusch currently serves as the college’s chief academic officer and will take his new post in April. He will succeed J. Lawrence Richards.

Barbara Lettiere, who has served as vice president for finance and administration at Trinity Washington University for the past 15 years, will become president of Immaculata University in July. She will succeed Sister R. Patricia Fadden, who has led Immaculata since 2002.

M. Scott McBride, dean of the Caudill College of Arts, Humanities, and Sciences at Morehead State University, in Kentucky, was named chancellor and chief academic officer of Pennsylvania State University-DuBois. He starts in March. Mr. McBride will take over from Ping Werner, who held the positions on an interim basis after Chancellor Melanie Hatch stepped down last year.

Wayne Riley has been appointed president of the State University of New York Downstate Medical Center. He will also serve as a professor of internal medicine in the College of Medicine and a professor of health policy and management in the School of Public Health. Mr. Riley is a clinical professor of medicine and an adjunct professor of health policy at Vanderbilt University and a former president of Meharry Medical College. He will take office in April.

Mark Smith, who has served for 11 years as president of Ohio Christian University, will become president of Columbia International University in July. Mr. Smith will succeed William Jones.

Debra Townsley was named Wheeling Jesuit University’s interim president. She previously served for five years as president of William Peace University.

Meredith Woo, former dean of the College and Graduate School of Arts and Sciences at the University of Virginia, was named president of Sweet Briar College. Ms. Woo is director of the Open Society Foundations’ International Higher Education Support Program, in London. She will succeed Phillip Stone, who will retire in May 2017.


Jean Floten, chancellor of Western Governors University Washington.

Chief academic officers


Stephen Kolison Jr., associate vice president for academic programs, educational innovation, and governance for the University of Wisconsin system, to executive vice president and provost at the University of Indianapolis.

Marlene Tromp, vice provost and dean at Arizona State University’s West campus, to campus provost and executive vice chancellor at the University of California at Santa Cruz.


Marc Manganaro, provost and vice president for academic affairs at Loyola University New Orleans.

Other top administrators


Michael Baker, chief financial officer at Zamias Services, to chief financial officer at Mount Aloysius College.

Barry Benson, senior vice president for development for university campaigns, regional development, and gift planning at the University of Arizona Foundation, to vice chancellor for advancement and senior vice president at the University of Illinois Foundation.

Crystal Brown, chief communications officer at the University of Maryland at College Park, to vice president for communications and chief communications officer at Howard University.

Mary Mooney Burns, interim vice president, to vice president for university advancement at Rockhurst University.

Brian Caputo, chief financial officer and city treasurer for the City of Aurora, Ill., to vice president for administration at the College of DuPage.

Curt King, chief information officer and dean of information technology at the Massachusetts College of Liberal Arts, to chief information officer at Salem State University.

Matt Kramer, chief executive of the Saint Paul Area Chamber of Commerce, to vice president for university and government relations at the University of Minnesota.

John Michael Lee Jr., special assistant to the president at Florida A&M University, to vice chancellor for university advancement at Elizabeth City State University.

Harry Stillerman, director of the foundation at Guilford Technical Community College, to vice president for institutional advancement and development at Piedmont Virginia Community College.

Melanie Tucker, vice president for student affairs and enrollment management at Dickinson State University, to vice president and dean of students at Maryville College.


Na’ilah Nasir, vice chancellor for equity and inclusion at the University of California at Berkeley, plans to resign on June 15 to serve as president of the Spencer Foundation.



Matthew Auer, vice president for academic affairs and dean of the faculty at Bates College, to dean of the School of Public and International Affairs at the University of Georgia.

Rosemary Blieszner, associate dean of the Graduate School, to interim dean of the College of Liberal Arts and Human Sciences at Virginia Tech.

Cliff Boucher, professor and chair of the department of life sciences, to interim dean of the North campus at Tyler Junior College.

David Figlio, director of the Institute for Policy Research and a professor of education and social policy at Northwestern University, was appointed dean of the School of Education and Social Policy. He will succeed Penelope Peterson, who is retiring in August after 20 years in the role.

Michael Frasciello, director of online learning in the College of Engineering and Computer Science, to interim dean of University College at Syracuse University.

Rebecca Neiduski, chair of the occupational-therapy department at Concordia University Wisconsin, to dean of the School of Health Sciences at Elon University.

Cheryl Rules, an adjunct faculty member, to dean of the College of Nursing and Allied Health at Grantham University.

Judith Smith was named founding dean of the Herb Alpert School of Music at the University of California at Los Angeles. She has been serving as interim dean since January last year. Ms. Smith has agreed to postpone her retirement until June 2019. She will start her new deanship in March.

Elizabeth Spiller, dean of the College of Liberal Arts and Human Sciences at Virginia Tech, to dean of the College of Letters and Science at the University of California at Davis.

Margaret Williams, dean of the College of Business and Public Administration at the University of North Dakota, to dean of the Jerry S. Rawls College of Business at Texas Tech University.


Ronald Marx, who has served as dean of the University of Arizona’s College of Education for the past 14 years, plans to step down in June.

Gene Sale, dean of the School of Education and Behavioral Studies at Palm Beach Atlantic University.


James Williams, dean of the university libraries at the University of Colorado at Boulder, effective June 30.

Other administrators


David Dean, former head football coach at Valdosta State University, to head football coach at the University of West Georgia.

Siham Doughman, university registrar at Southern Connecticut State University, to university registrar at Syracuse University.

Donald Dyer, chair of modern languages, to associate dean of faculty and academic affairs in the College of Liberal Arts at the University of Mississippi.

Marcia France, associate dean of the college, to associate provost at Washington and Lee University.

Camille George, an associate professor in the School of Engineering, to associate dean of engineering at the University of St. Thomas (Minn.).

Jaclyn Graves, laboratory safety manager at Stevenson University, to director of risk management and environmental health and safety at McDaniel College.

Paul Grondahl, a staff writer at Times Union, in Albany, to director of the New York State Writers Institute at the University at Albany.

Bryan Hanson, assistant director of the Werner Institute for Negotiation & Conflict Resolution at Creighton University, to graduate-student ombudsperson at Virginia Tech.

Stan Meiburg was appointed director of graduate programs in sustainability at Wake Forest University. He has worked at the Environmental Protection Agency since 1977, most recently serving as its acting deputy administrator. He will start on July 1.

Harris Smith, interim director, to director of the Johnny Carson School of Theatre and Film at the University of Nebraska at Lincoln.

Angelina Torain, deputy athletics director and senior women’s administrator at the University of the Incarnate Word, to associate athletics director at the University of Notre Dame.

Madelyn Wessel, university counsel at Virginia Commonwealth University, to university counsel and secretary of the corporation at Cornell University.

Marielle Wijnands, study-abroad adviser, to assistant director of student services in the global education office at Virginia Tech.


Brian Schottlaender, university librarian at the University of California at San Diego, effective June 30.

Department chairs


Scott Brown, professor of educational psychology, to head of the department of educational psychology at the University of Connecticut.

Don Estep, a professor of statistics, to chair of the department of statistics at Colorado State University.

Devi Gnyawali, a management professor, to head of the department of management in the College of Business at Virginia Tech.

Olga Pierrakos, program director of the division of undergraduate education in the Directorate of Education and Human Resources at the National Science Foundation, to founding chair of the engineering department at Wake Forest University.

Jafar Saniie, a professor of engineering, to chair of the department of electrical and computer engineering at the Illinois Institute of Technology.

Melanie Simpson, associate director of the Center for Biotechnology and a professor of biochemistry at the University of Nebraska at Lincoln, to head of the department of molecular and structural biochemistry at North Carolina State University.



Lynn Donham, vice president for marketing and communications at the Association of Governing Boards of Universities and Colleges, to vice president for communications at the Council of Independent Colleges.

Amy Heitzman, senior vice president for strategy and chief learning officer, to deputy chief executive officer at the University Professional and Continuing Education Association.

John King Jr., U.S. secretary of education under President Obama, to chief executive of Education Trust.

Frank Yamada, president of McCormick Theological Seminary, to executive director of the Association of Theological Schools in the United States and Canada.

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Correction (02/23/2017, 4:35 p.m.): The original listings incorrectly stated that Marlene Tromp, vice provost of Arizona State University's West campus, would be campus provost and executive vice chancellor at that campus. Ms. Tromp will be campus provost and executive vice chancellor at the University of California at Santa Cruz.