Western Academic Leadership Forum



Photo of James ApplegateJames L. Applegate serves as vice president for Strategic Impact at Lumina Foundation. In this role, he leads in development of the Foundation’s funding programs supporting achievement of “Goal 2025” to dramatically increase educational attainment in the U.S, especially for low income, first generation, minority, and adult students. Prior to joining Lumina in 2008, he served as Senior Fellow and Vice President for Academic Affairs at the Kentucky Council on Postsecondary Education from 1999 through 2008. Jim earned his B.A from Georgetown College (KY) as well as an M.A. and Ph.D. from University of Illinois. His dissertation received the award given to the most outstanding dissertations completed in his field.

Photo of Jon BellumJon Bellum is the provost and senior vice president at the Colorado State University-Global Campus where he has led the development of this fully online, public university through his work with course and program development, academic assessment, information technology and strategic planning. He has been involved in online and technology-enhanced education for over 10 years at several institutions including the University of Nebraska-Lincoln and the University of Vermont. Bellum received his BSEd from the University of South Dakota and his PhD in educational leadership and higher education from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln.

Photo of Rudy CrewRudy Crew is Chief Education Officer for the State of Oregon. Crew was selected by Governor John Kitzhaber in May 2012 to serve in this newly created position to help oversee the integrated public education system from pre-kindergarten through college and career readiness. Crew began his career as a teacher in Worcester, Massachusetts, and has served as chancellor of the New York City Public Schools and superintendent of Miami-Dade County Public Schools. Most recently, Dr. Crew was a Professor of Clinical Education at the University of Southern California's Rossier School of Education.

Photo of Jose CruzJosé L. Cruz is Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs at California State University, Fullerton. He is the former Vice President for Higher Education Policy and Practice at The Education Trust.  Previously, he served as vice president for student affairs of the University of Puerto Rico System and as professor and chair of the Electrical and Computer Engineering Department and dean of academic affairs of the UPR Mayagüez campus. He earned a doctorate in electrical engineering from the Georgia Institute of Technology and is a recipient of the National Science Foundation Career Award and a patented inventor.

Photo of Peter EwellPeter Ewell is Vice President of the National Center for Higher Education Management Systems (NCHEMS). His work focuses on assessing institutional effectiveness and the outcomes of college. He has authored seven books and numerous articles on the topic of improving undergraduate instruction through assessment and consulted with more than 400 institutions. A graduate of Haverford College, he received his Ph.D. in Political Science from Yale University in 1976 and was on the faculty of the University of Chicago.

Photo of Brice HarrisBrice W. Harris was selected as the 15th chancellor of the California Community Colleges by the system’s board of governors in September 2012. Prior to being selected as the leader of the largest system of higher education in the nation, Harris served 16 years as chancellor of the Los Rios Community College District, which is one of the largest multicollege districts in the U.S., serving 85,000 students each semester. In his former role, Harris provided leadership and guidance to four community colleges: American River, Cosumnes River, Folsom Lake, and Sacramento City. Harris did his postdoctoral study at the Harvard University Institute of Educational Management and received his doctorate in education at Nova Southeastern University, his master's in communication from the University of Arkansas, and his bachelor's in communication from Southwestern Oklahoma State University.

Photo of Michel HillmanMichel Hillman is the chief academic and student affairs officer for the North Dakota University System for 15 years. He has worked closely with students, faculty and administrators to create a flexible and responsive academic review and approval process following the vision of the Roundtable on Higher Education; a “collaborative student” model supporting seamless student registration, billing and transcription of courses for students concurrently enrolled on multiple system campuses; a policy and functional framework to support tremendous growth in quality online course offerings: a formal accountability and continuous student success improvement system; and improved communication and relationships with non-system campuses, particularly tribal colleges. Dr. Hillman presently serves as an advisory board member for the Interstate Passport—a WICHE region transfer initiative grounded in the LEAP learning outcomes.

Photo of Sally JohnstoneSally M. Johnstone is the Vice President for Academic Advancement at the Western Governors University where she works on internal academic issues and represents WGU in higher education forums. Prior to joining WGU, she served as Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs at Winona State University in Minnesota. She also spent over 15 years at the Western Interstate Commission for Higher Education (WICHE)/WCET. Johnstone’s experiences include work on the integration of technologies into learning, policy issues for higher education institutions and system organizations, inter-institutional collaborations, and quality assurance issues. Johnstone earned her Ph. D. in experimental psychology from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, USA.

Photo of Ellen JunnEllen Junn is the provost and vice president for academic affairs at San Jose State University. Previously, she served as the associate provost at California State University, Fresno, where she also served as the interim senior academic technology officer and director of Technology Innovations for Learning and Teaching and as the interim director of the Center for the Scholarly Advancement of Learning and Teaching. Junn graduated from the University of Michigan with a B.S. and high honors in psychology and earned an M.A. and Ph.D. in cognitive and developmental psychology from Princeton University. Her research interests and publications include college teaching effectiveness, faculty development, academic technology, educational equity, diversity, and early childhood education and advocacy.

Photo of Daphne KollerDaphne Koller is a Professor of Computer Science at Stanford University and the co-founder of Coursera, a social entrepreneurship company that works with top universities to make the best education freely accessible to everyone. In her research life, Koller works in the area of machine learning. She has received the Presidential Early Career Award for Scientists and Engineers, the MacArthur Foundation Fellowship, the ACM/Infosys award, and membership in the National Academy of Engineering. She is an award winning teacher, who pioneered many of the ideas that underlie the Coursera user experience. She received her BSc and MSc from the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, and her PhD from Stanford in 1994.

Photo of David LonganeckerDavid A. Longanecker is the president of the Western Interstate Commission for Higher Education. Previously he served for six years as the assistant secretary for postsecondary education at the U.S. Department of Education, developing and implementing national policy and programs that provided more than $40 billion annually in student aid and $1 billion to institutions. Prior to that he was the state higher education executive officer (SHEEO) in Colorado and Minnesota. He was also the principal analyst for higher education for the Congressional Budget Office.He holds an Ed.D. from Stanford University, an M.A. in student personnel work from the George Washington University, and a B.A. in sociology from Washington State University.

Photo of Eduardo OchoaEduardo Ochoa is the president of California State University, Monterey Bay, where he oversees all operations, from academic affairs to enrollment and student life. He is responsible for strategic planning and goal-setting for the university, as well as being a leader of regional governance and collaboration for planning and development. He has worked as an engineer, an academic faculty member and administrator, and as assistant secretary for postsecondary education in the Obama Administration. Ochoa earned his bachelor's in physics and philosophy from Reed College, his master's in nuclear science and engineering from Columbia University, and his Ph.D. in economics from the New School.

Photo of Lynn PriddyLynn Priddy has served as Vice President for Accreditation Services for the Higher Learning Commission of NCA since 1999. In her current position, she oversees decision-making processes, the peer corps and peer review, PEAQ and AQIP operations, education and training, and the Academy for Assessment of Student Learning. Over the past two years, Lynn has played a pivotal leadership role in the conceptualization of the Commission’s new accrediting process, Pathways, and continues to direct its development. This leadership includes spearheading the Commission’s grant from the Lumina Foundation, which includes 23 institutions testing the use of Lumina’s proposed Degree Qualifications Profile. Priddy is a summa cum laude graduate at the baccalaureate, master’s, and doctoral levels; she holds a B. A. and M.A. in English and a Ph.D. in Higher Education, General Education with a focus on qualitative research and evaluation.

Photo of Andrew RogersonAndrew Rogerson serves as the provost and vice president, for Academic Affairs at Sonoma State University, California. Previously, Rogerson held dean positions at Fresno State and Marshall University. He has held faculty positions at the Universities of Toronto and London, and the South Dakota School of Mines & Technology.  Rogerson values the educational worth of student research.  His publications in microbiology have involved undergraduate and graduate students. His research has been funded by agencies including NOAA, EPA, NSF and NERC (UK). Rogerson received his Ph.D. in Microbial Ecology from the University of Stirling, Scotland in 1979.

Photo of Sue RosserSue Rosser has served as the provost and vice president for Academic Affairs at San Francisco State University since August, 2009.  Previously, she served for 10 years as the dean of Ivan Allen College, the liberal arts college at Georgia Institute of Technology, where she held the endowed Ivan Allen dean’s chair of Liberal Arts and Technology.  She is the author of 13 books and over 130 journal articles on theoretical and applied aspects of women, science, health and technology. Rosser received her Ph.D. in Zoology from the University of Wisconsin-Madison.

Photo of Ephraim SmithEphraim Smith assumed the role of executive vice chancellor and chief academic officer for the CSU system in July, 2010. From 1998 through 2010, Smith served as the vice president for California State University, Fullerton where he was responsible for managing more than 3,000 faculty and 300 staff members, as well as eight colleges, contracts and grants, institutional research, outreach, admissions, and international partnerships. Smith earned a B.S. in accounting from Providence College, an M.S. in accounting from the University of Massachusetts, and a Ph.D. in accounting from the University of Illinois.

Photo of Timothy WhiteTimothy P. White, the seventh chancellor of the California State University system, formerly served as the chancellor of UC Riverside and saw the campus grow to more than 21,000 students for the first time in its history. He was also professor of biology and of biomedical sciences. White came to UC Riverside in 2008, after serving as the University of Idaho's president from 2004 to 2008. Through his leadership the University of Idaho established a vision and strategic direction to further the institution's role as the state's land-grant and flagship research university. White is a product of California’s Master Plan: he pursued his higher education at Diablo Valley Community College, Fresno State, California State University East Bay and the University of California, Berkeley, where he received his Ph.D.

Photo of Laura Woodworth-NeyLaura Woodworth-Ney is associate vice president for academic affairs at Idaho State University.  Woodworth-Ney’s former administrative appointments include chair of the department of history and director of women studies.  Woodworth-Ney is a prolific scholar of history and the humanities, having published more than 30 articles, book reviews, and scholarly encyclopedia entries, as well as three books. Woodworth-Ney is a graduate of the Bryn Mawr HERS Institute for women higher education leaders, and the former editor-in-chief of Idaho Yesterdays, the state historical society’s scholarly journal.  She earned a bachelor degree in English, and a PhD in American history and public history from Washington State University in 1996.