Appointments, Resignations, Deaths (3/24/2017)

March 19, 2017

Carol Christ

Chief executives

M. Christopher Brown, provost and executive vice president for academic affairs for the Southern University system, was named president of Kentucky State University. He will take over from Aaron Thompson, who has served as interim president since May of last year. Mr. Brown was previously president of Alcorn State University, in Mississippi, for three years.

Carol Christ will become chancellor of the University of California at Berkeley on July 1. Ms. Christ, who is interim executive vice chancellor and provost at Berkeley and was previously president of Smith College, will be the first woman to hold the top post at Berkeley. She will succeed Nicholas Dirks, who plans to return to teaching and research.

Debra Fitzsimons, who was vice chancellor for business services for the South Orange County Community College District, has been serving as interim chancellor of the district since the retirement of Gary Poertner last summer.

Elliot Hirshman, president of San Diego State University since 2011, will become president of Stevenson University, in Maryland, on July 1. He will take over from Claire Moore, who has served as interim president since December when President Kevin Manning stepped down after 16 years at the helm.

Robert Clayton Robbins, who has served as president of the Texas Medical Center since 2012, has been named the sole finalist for the University of Arizona presidency and has begun negotiating his contract with the Arizona Board of Regents. He previously worked at Stanford University as a professor and chair of the cardiothoracic-surgery department in the School of Medicine and founding director of the Stanford Cardiovascular Institute.


Ronald DePinho, president of the University of Texas M.D. Anderson Cancer Center.


Lee Jackson, chancellor of the University of North Texas system, plans to retire before the end of this year after 15 years at the helm.

Chief academic officers


Catharine Almquist, associate vice president for planning and accreditation, to vice president for academic affairs at Trident Technical College.

Rev. Boyung Lee, associate professor of practical theology, education, and spiritual formation at the Pacific School of Religion, to senior vice president for academic affairs and dean of the faculty at the Iliff School of Theology.

Thomas Poon, former interim president of Pitzer College, to executive vice president and provost at Loyola Marymount University.

Raylene Rospond, vice president for institutional effectiveness and dean of the College of Pharmacy, Natural and Health Sciences, to vice president for academic affairs at Manchester University.

Other top administrators


Rev. Kevin Burke, an associate professor of systematic theology and former dean of the Jesuit School of Theology at Santa Clara University, to vice president for mission at Regis University.

Sonja Feist-Price, senior assistant provost for faculty affairs, to vice president for institutional diversity at the University of Kentucky.

Susan Coomer Galbreath, vice provost for academic and financial affairs and special assistant to the president, to senior vice president for strategy at Lipscomb University.

Laurie Houck, vice president for development and alumni relations at the College of Wooster, to vice president for institutional advancement at Rollins College.

Elena Litescu, associate director of admissions and university center dean at DeVry University, to vice president for admissions at the Technical Career Institute College of Technology.

Daniel Stephens, associate vice chancellor for finance at the University of North Texas system, to vice president for the finance and planning at Illinois State University.



Willow Bay, director of the Annenberg School for Communication and Journalism at the University of Southern California, to dean of the school.

Megan Carpenter, founder and co-director of the Center for Law and Intellectual Property at Texas A&M University School of Law, to dean of the School of Law at the University of New Hampshire.

Madhav Rajan, a professor of accounting and a former senior associate dean of academic affairs in the Graduate School of Business at Stanford University, to dean of the Booth School of Business at the University of Chicago.


Chaden Djalali, dean of the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences at the University of Iowa, effective July 1, 2018.

Other administrators


Luis Bettencourt, a professor of complex systems at the Santa Fe Institute, to director of the Mansueto Institute for Urban Innovation and a professor in the department of ecology and evolution at the University of Chicago.

Marco Chacon, founder and chief executive of Paragon Bioservices, a biopharmaceutical manufacturer, to assistant vice president for industry alliances at the University of Maryland at Baltimore.

Paulette Erickson-England, senior staff faculty counselor, to director of the faculty and staff assistance program in the department of human resources at the University of Colorado at Boulder.

Margaret Ferguson, interim senior associate vice chancellor for academic affairs, to senior associate vice chancellor for academic affairs at Indiana University-Purdue University at Indianapolis.

Andrew Fisher, an associate professor of history, to associate dean at Carleton College.

Patrick Gibbons, chief communications officer at Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory, to executive director of academic communications at the University of Notre Dame.

James Green, director of institutional research, to associate vice president for planning and accreditation at Trident Technical College.

Suzanne Grossberg, an independent consultant, to director of development in the Polk Museum of Art at Florida Southern College.

Samantha Huge, senior associate athletics director at Texas A&M University at College Station, to athletics director at the College of William & Mary.

Jay Lively, a former assistant basketball coach, to alumni-relations manager at Warren Wilson College.

William McDowell, a professor of entrepreneurship at Middle Tennessee State University, to executive and academic director of the Robert and Carolyn Turner School of Entrepreneurship and Innovation at Bradley University.

Elizabeth Mitchell, assistant vice president for the School of Business at George Washington University, to assistant dean of advancement for the Pamplin College of Business at Virginia Tech.

William Oliver, a professor of the practice in the physics department, to associate director of the Research Laboratory of Electronics and a laboratory fellow in the Lincoln Laboratory at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

Daniel Otter, a lecturer in education and curriculum development at the University of New Mexico, to associate dean of continuing studies at the University of Redlands.

Raymond Pickett, a professor of New Testament at the Lutheran School of Theology at Chicago, will be the Pacific Lutheran Theological Seminary at California Lutheran University’s first rector.

Allen Stanley, contract-review manager, to interim associate vice chancellor for finance at the University of Arkansas at Little Rock.

Paola Sztajn, former head of the department of teacher education and learning sciences, to associate dean of research and innovation for the College of Education at North Carolina State University.

Lisa Templeton, interim associate provost, to associate provost for the extended campus at Oregon State University.

Susanna Zambrano, academic advising and student services coordinator, to associate dean of South County services at Arizona Western College.


Pamela George, assistant dean of academic affairs for Yale College at Yale University.

Wes Yeary, director of sports ministry at Baylor University, will step down this summer.

Department chairs


Penny Pasque, a professor of educational leadership and policy studies at the University of Oklahoma at Norman, to head of the department of educational leadership, policy, and human development in the College of Education at North Carolina State University.



Mark Davis, a professor of chemical engineering at the California Institute of Technology, to a professor of chemical engineering at the University of Southern California.

Arne Duncan, former U.S. secretary of education, was appointed senior fellow in the University of Chicago’s Harris School of Public Policy and will also serve as special adviser to the school’s dean.

Sylvia Hsu, a professor and chief of dermatology at Baylor College of Medicine, to a professor and chair of the dermatology department and an attending physician at the hospital at Temple University.

Risa Lavizzo-Mourey, a physician, will be a population-health and health-equity professor at the University of Pennsylvania and will have joint faculty appointments in the Perelman School of Medicine, Wharton School, and School of Nursing. Ms. Lavizzo-Mourey has served as president of the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation for 14 years and will step down from that post next month.

Susan Rice, who served as a national security adviser to President Barack Obama, will be a visiting research fellow in the School of International Service at American University. She was previously an ambassador to the United Nations.


Harry Lewis, a professor of computer science at Harvard University who served as dean of college for eight years, will retire in July 2020. He will have been a faculty member at Harvard for 46 years.



Arthur Keiser, chancellor of Keiser University, was elected chairman of the National Advisory Committee on Institutional Quality and Integrity, which oversees the college and university accreditation agencies in the nation.

Christine Keller, vice president for research and policy analysis at the Association of Public and Land-Grant Universities, to executive director of the Association for Institutional Research.

Mary Beth Rathe, deputy executive director, to executive director of the National Collegiate Honors Council.

Rona Sheramy, executive director of the Association of Jewish Studies, was appointed executive director of the Jewish Foundation for Education of Women, a nonprofit based in New York City that provides financial aid and professional-development opportunities to women.

Tom Sugar was appointed president of Complete College America. He has served as the nonprofit’s senior vice president since its founding in 2009.


John Carey, former president of Warren Wilson College, died on March 2.

Donald Harper, 89, a former professor of marketing at the University of Minnesota-Twin Cities, died on February 25.

Robert Lewis Kane, 77, a former professor and chair of aging and long-term care at the University of Minnesota-Twin Cities, died on March 6.

George Olah, 89, founding director of the Loker Hydrocarbon Research Institute and former professor of organic chemistry at the University of Southern California, died on March 8. Mr. Olah was recipient of the 1994 Nobel Prize in Chemistry, which he received for his advancements in carbocation chemistry.

Rodolfo Serrano, 84, a professor emeritus of education at California State University at Bakersfield, died on February 7.

Thomas Starzl, 90, director emeritus of the Thomas E. Starzl Transplantation Institute and a former professor of surgery at the University of Pittsburgh, died on March 4 in Pittsburgh. Mr. Starzl is a pioneer in organ transplantation. While working at the University of Colorado as an associate professor and then a professor of surgery, he performed the world’s first liver transplant, in 1963, and the first successful liver transplant, in 1967.

Mary Jane Ward, 95, former chair and professor of education at Barry University, died on February 11 in Fort Collins, Colo.

Joan Whipp, 71, director of teacher education and an associate professor of education at Marquette University, died on February 25 in Shorewood, Wis.

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