2022 Forum Annual Meeting
April 20-22, 2022
Speakers and Sponsors
Georgia Institute of Technology
Chaouki T. Abdallah is the executive vice president for research at the Georgia Institute of Technology. Abdallah provides overall leadership for the more than $1 billion annual research enterprise that includes the Georgia Tech Research Enterprise, as well as economic development, and other related support units. Previously, he served at the University of New Mexico (UNM) as professor of electrical and computer engineering. In 2017-18, he served as the 22nd president of UNM. Abdallah obtained a bachelor of engineering degree from Youngstown State University in 1981, and a M.S. and Ph.D. in electrical engineering from Georgia Tech in 1982 and 1988.
Southern Regional Education Board
Ansley Abraham is founding director of the Southern Regional Education Board State Doctoral Scholars Program (DSP) that focuses on diversifying the faculty by supporting underrepresented and underserved minority scholars to earn their Ph.D. The DSP is one of the nation’s best-documented, nationally recognized, and successful programs for producing minority Ph.Ds. who seek faculty careers in academe. Abraham brings more than 30 years of experience working on issues of policy and practice as it relates to higher education. Prior to arriving at SREB, Abraham worked in Florida as a program specialist in the Florida State Department of Education and management analyst in the Florida Governor’s Office. Abraham earned his M.S. and Ph.D. in sociology from Florida State University.
Washington State University
Elizabeth Chilton was named provost and executive vice president in May of 2020 and began serving at Washington State University (WSU) in July. She is a tenured professor in WSU’s Department of Anthropology and will assume the role of the inaugural WSU Pullman chancellor position in July 2022.Prior to joining WSU, she served as dean of the Harpur College of Arts and Sciences at Binghamton University, one of the four research universities in the SUNY system, from 2017 to 2020. Chilton is a first-generation college student and earned her M.A. and Ph.D. at the University of Massachusetts Amherst, after earning her B.A. at the University at Albany, State University of New York.
Forum Executive Committee, Utah Valley University
David R. Connelly is the associate provost for academic programs at Utah Valley University. He is a former faculty senate president and chair of the History and Political Science Department. His primary teaching interests are in public administration. Connelly previously worked for the Illinois Institute for Rural Affairs (IIRA) and taught at Western Illinois University. He has also worked developing and implementing information technology policy at the local, state and federal level while at the Center for Technology in Government (CTG) at the University at Albany. Connelly has a Ph.D. from the University at Albany while his M.P.A. is from Brigham Young University.
Forum Executive Committee, State of Oregon: Higher Education Coordinating Commission
Veronica Dujon, Ph.D., is the director for Academic Policy and Authorization at Oregon Higher Education Coordination Commission. She leads the Commission’s efforts to coordinate academic programs, degree pathways, and student success initiatives among Oregon’s public universities. Dujon also oversees degree authorization for private schools, and licensing and compliance for private career schools. Prior to joining the HECC she was an associate dean in the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences at Portland State University. Dujon did her graduate work at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. She is an environmental sociologist by training. Dujon’s research and publications focus on conflicts over declining natural resources; the role of women in the global economy; and the tensions between national development strategies and forces of globalization.
Thomas Gallagher, Ed.D., serves as dean for Missoula College at the University of Montana (UM). He holds academic rank as a full professor in the Business & Technology department with expertise in information technology, computer science, and cybersecurity. During his 20 years at UM he has been a faculty member, associate dean, and faculty union president. Gallagher received his B.A. in mathematics from Carroll College, M.S. in computer science from Western Washington University, and the Ed.D. from UM. He is currently building CyberMontana, a hub for cyber workforce education, economic development, and community awareness.
Forum Executive Committee, University of Hawai‘i System
Debora Halbert is the associate vice president for academic programs and policy at the University of Hawai‘i System where she works on student success and transfer related issues. Prior to her current position, she was the associate vice chancellor for academic affairs at the University of Hawai‘i at Mānoa. She received her B.A. and M.A. from Western Washington University and her Ph.D. in political science from the University of Hawai‘i at Mānoa. Prior to returning to Hawai‘i where she was a professor in the political science department teaching law, policy and also futures studies, she taught for 12 years at Otterbein University in Westerville, Ohio.
Vice President, Policy Analysis and Research
Patrick Lane is the vice president of WICHE’s Policy Analysis and Research unit. He previously was its director of data initiatives, a role that has included managing the Multistate Longitudinal Data Exchange, which seeks to improve linkages between state data systems to provide better information to students and their families while also improving education, workforce, and economic development policy. He previously coordinated WICHE’s Adult College Completion Network and has worked extensively on the Non-Traditional No More: Policy Solutions for Adult Learners project. Both projects focused on identifying policy and practice solutions to help adults with prior college credit return to postsecondary education to complete their degrees. Lane also coordinated WICHE’s College Access Regional Network, which focused on increasing the number of low-income students prepared to enter and succeed in post secondary education. He came to WICHE having spent several years working in education policy in the Republic of the Marshall Islands. Lane received a master’s degree from the Heller School for Social Policy and Management at Brandeis University in 2007 and completed a Ph.D. in public administration at the University of Colorado Denver in 2015.
University of Alaska Anchorage
Claudia Lampman has held the position of vice provost for student success at the University of Alaska Anchorage (UAA) since 2017. She works to increase student persistence, retention, graduation and course pass rates and to decrease time to degree by implementing university-wide student success initiatives. Lampman is also the dean of the Honors College and professor of psychology at UAA and previously served as director of the psychology department. Lampman received a B.A. in psychology from Boston University and both an M.A. and Ph.D. in applied social psychology from Loyola University of Chicago.
Montana University System
Scott Lemmon joined the Office of the Commissioner of Higher Education with the Montana University System in July of 2020 as the inaugural director of admissions and enrollment strategy after previously serving as the associate vice president for enrollment management with the University of Montana. He has over a decade in various admissions and enrollment management roles with UM-Missoula, Indiana University-Bloomington and Davenport University. He holds his bachelor’s degree in marketing and an M.B.A. from Davenport University and is currently finishing his doctorate (A.B.D.) with Indiana University-Bloomington. He has taught both undergraduate and graduate coursework in the Department of Management and Entrepreneurship at Indiana University-Bloomington’s Kelley School of Business.
University of Idaho
Jerry McMurtry, Ph.D., has been the dean of the College of Graduate Studies at the University of Idaho since 2016. While serving as dean he has led the College of Graduate Studies in expanding the professional development opportunities for graduate students and post-doctoral fellows across the institution. Additionally, McMurtry has led a number of efforts pointed toward supporting Native American and Alaska Native graduate students, with particular success in supporting Indigenous doctoral students in STEM disciplines. McMurtry previously served as associate dean of the Graduate College and dean of the College of Education at the University of Idaho. McMurtry received his Ph.D. in human resource development from Colorado State University.
University of Arizona
Christine Salvesen is the associate vice provost for student success and retention innovation at the University of Arizona, overseeing many campus-wide initiatives directed at supporting the retention and graduation of undergraduate students. Salvesen has worked at the University of Arizona for over 31 years in several capacities within student affairs. She has both her B.S. in psychology and M.A. in educational psychology and a Ph.D. in higher education from the University of Arizona.
Forum Executive Committee, Metropolitan State University of Denver
Alfred Tatum has served as provost and executive vice president at Metropolitan State University of Denver since March of 2021. In this role, he works collaboratively with faculty, staff, administrators, and the Board of Trustees to create and sustain a vibrant environment to advance MSU Denver’s mission “to provide a high-quality, accessible, enriching education that prepares students for successful careers, post-graduate education, and lifelong learning in a multicultural, global, and technological society.” Previously, Tatum served as professor and dean of the College of Education at the University of Illinois at Chicago and is an accomplished author.
University of Colorado Colorado Springs
L. Lynn Vidler, Ph.D. (they/them) has served as professor of Spanish and dean of the College of Letters, Arts & Sciences at the University of Colorado Colorado Springs since 2020. Their administrative interests lie primarily in radical transparency, DEI and building a deliberately developmental organizational culture. They were previously professor, program director of Spanish and associate dean at the United States Military Academy (West Point) and chair and associate dean at the University of South Dakota. Vidler serves as a board member of the Association for Hispanic Classical Theater and is a trustee of the Bee Vradenburg Foundation. They earned their B.A. in Spanish at New York University and their M.A. and Ph.D. in Spanish from the University of California, Irvine.
University of Utah
Mary Ann Villarreal serves as the inaugural vice president for equity, diversity, and inclusion at the University of Utah. Villarreal provides leadership of all EDI initiatives across the academic and health science campuses. Villarreal works to strengthen equity at the university and in higher education while serving as the vice chair of the Association of American Colleges & Universities, and on the executive committee of the Association of Public Land-Grant Universities’ Commission on Access, Diversity and Excellence, and TIAA Inclusion Council. Villarreal holds a bachelor’s in women’s studies from Mount Holyoke College and a Ph.D. in history from Arizona State University.
David Vuletich, Ph.D., is a senior director in EAB’s Research Advisory Services and serves as the academic strategy team lead. The academic strategy team houses EAB’s experts in academic affairs, student success, and university budget models, and is responsible for driving value for our partner institutions through consensus building, decision support, and guidance on best practices implementation. Previously, Vuletich worked for the American Institutes for Research as a content leader in standardized testing and was a summer associate at Huron Consulting. Prior to this he was an assistant professor of biochemistry at the College at Brockport in the SUNY system, where he helped design a new biochemistry major and started an externally funded research program. Vuletich has earned bachelor’s degrees in astrophysics and chemical physics from Michigan State University, a dual-title Ph.D. in biochemistry and astrobiology from the Pennsylvania State University, and an M.B.A. from Indiana University’s Kelley Direct online program.
Southern Oregon University
Neil Woolf leads enrollment management and student affairs functions in support of Southern Oregon University’s (SOU) strategic plan. Programs under his direction include enrollment services, records, and registration, financial aid, admissions, dean of students, student life, the university’s student resource centers, student organizations, the Stevenson Union, campus recreation, and student health and wellness programs. Prior to joining SOU, Woolf led enrollment management and student affairs efforts in Wisconsin, Washington, and Nevada. Woolf earned his bachelor’s degree in government and business administration from Eastern Washington University, his master’s degree in public administration from the University of Utah, and his doctorate in higher education administration from the University of Nevada, Las Vegas.
South Dakota Mines
Joseph Wright, J.D. is the associate vice president for research-economic development at South Dakota Mines. He has held this position for a decade. Wright graduated with a degree in biology and chemistry from Utah Valley University. He also graduated from the University of Kansas School of Law. Wright has worked both on the academic and private side of economic development. Wright held positions at the University of Kansas’s Office of Intellectual Property and Technology Transfer and The Siouxland Initiative, a regional economic development organization. This varied background, gives him an understanding of economic development internal and external to higher education.