News Release from AASCU


Contact: Jennifer Walpole (202) 478-4665


WASHINGTON, D.C.— Deborah F. Stanley, president, State University of New York College at Oswego, assumed the chair of the American Association of State Colleges and Universities’ (AASCU) Board of Directors during the association’s Annual Meeting on Tuesday, November 1, 2016.

At Oswego, Stanley has established the Oswego Guarantee, an unprecedented merit scholarship program, and a capital improvement plan encompassing $800 million in completed and planned campus renewal projects. She has launched new programs in engineering, the SUNY Oswego Metro Center in downtown Syracuse, and the college's School of Communication, Media and the Arts.

Before becoming chair-elect in 2015, Stanley completed a three-year term on AASCU’s Board of Directors as secretary-treasurer. She also served on AASCU’s Millennium Leadership Initiative (MLI) Steering Committee and as a MLI Mentor; on AASCU’s Financial Review Task Force, the investment committee; the Council of State Representatives; the Committee on International Education; the Nominating Committee; and Policies and Purposes.

Mildred García, president of California State University, Fullerton, was elected chair-elect of the board; she will serve as chair in 2018. Since her arrival at CSU Fullerton in 2012, the university has seen a 24 percent improvement in six-year graduation rates and a significant drop in the achievement gap between underrepresented students and their campus peers. The institution is number one in California and fifth in the nation in awarding bachelor’s degrees to Hispanics, as well as fifth in the nation in graduating students of color.

García’s leadership with AASCU includes serving on the AASCU Board of Directors; chairing the Committee on International Education; MLI mentor and chair of the MLI Executive Steering Committee; and delivering the President-to-Presidents lecture in 2013, a tradition at the AASCU Annual Meeting for more than 30 years and a signal honor by the AASCU Board of Directors to one of their colleagues.

The following presidents and chancellors will serve on the AASCU Board of Directors in 2017:  

Past Chair: 
Stephen M. Jordan
, president, Metropolitan State University of Denver (Colo.)

George E. Ross
, president, Central Michigan University 

Newly elected directors include:

Denise A. Battles
, president, State University of New York at Geneseo
Dianne F. Harrison
, president, California State University, Northridge
Sandra J. Jordan
, chancellor, University of South Carolina Aiken
Dennis J. Shields
, chancellor, University of Wisconsin-Platteville
Jack Thomas
, president, Western Illinois University 
Charles L. Welch, II
, president, Arkansas State University System
Karen Whitney, president, Clarion University of Pennsylvania       

Those continuing their terms as members of AASCU’s board:

Joseph Bertolino
, president, Southern Connecticut State University
Linda M. Bleicken
, president, Armstrong State University (Ga.)
Rita Cheng
, president, Northern Arizona University
Philip L. Dubois
, chancellor, University of North Carolina at Charlotte
Dana G. Hoyt
, president, Sam Houston State University (Texas)
Emile (Mel) C. Netzhammer, III, chancellor, Washington State University Vancouver 
Scott Robert Olson
, president, Winona State University (Minn.)
Nasser H. Paydar, chancellor, Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis


The American Association of State Colleges and Universities (AASCU) is a Washington, D.C.-based higher education association of more than 400 public colleges, universities, and systems whose members share a learning- and teaching-centered culture, a historic commitment to underserved student populations, and a dedication to research and creativity that advances their regions’ economic progress and cultural development. These are institutions Delivering America’s Promise of Opportunities for All.