York City – The
State University of New York Board of Trustees today appointed Dr. Donald P.
Christian as interim president of SUNY New Paltz. Christian has served as provost and vice president for academic affairs at the
college since August 2009.
“SUNY New Paltz is
consistently recognized as one of the best small colleges in the country,” said
SUNY Chancellor Nancy L. Zimpher. “Given his strong administrative
experience at the college and proven ability to lead, I am confident Dr.
Christian will maintain this level of excellence for SUNY New Paltz while
the search for a permanent president of the college continues."
“I could not be more pleased
with the choice of Donald Christian as interim president,” said Carl T. Hayden,
chairman of the SUNY Board of Trustees. “Donald’s success in public higher
education in New York and the Midwest will benefit the students, faculty, and
greater SUNY New Paltz community during the transition to a new permanent
president. I commend Chancellor Zimpher for her recommendation and my
colleagues on the Board for their support.”
“I am honored and
humbled to have this opportunity to help lead the college during this
transition, and I thank
Chancellor Zimpher and the Board of Trustees for their confidence in my ability
to do so," said Christian.
“We are well positioned for
the future, and I am committed to sustaining the best of the trajectory we have
been on – emphasizing high academic quality and standards, continuing to
improve our physical facilities, and giving our students the best education we
can to prepare them for bright futures. And, I look forward to returning to the
Provost position when the next President joins us.”
“Don Christian will be a
superb steward of the college,” said outgoing president Steven Poskanzer, who
has held the position since May 2003. “He combines wise judgment, a remarkable
sense of how to build academic quality, practical smarts and a gracious human
touch in a rare leadership package.”
About Dr. Donald P.
As provost and vice president
at SUNY New Paltz, Christian serves as the college’s chief academic officer, is
a member of the President’s executive management team, and assumes the
responsibilities of chief executive in the President’s absence.
Prior to his arrival at New
Paltz, Christian was dean of the College of Arts and Sciences and professor at
the University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire for five years. As dean, Christian led
efforts at campus, state, and national levels to advance understanding of the
value of a liberal education in a knowledge-driven 21st century
society; strengthened student-faculty research programs; and supported projects
to enhance equity and diversity on the campus.
Previously, he served as
associate dean for the biological sciences and professor at the University of Montana (1997-2004) as well as chair, director of graduate studies and
professor of biology at the University of Minnesota-Duluth (1978-1997).
Dr. Christian earned his
bachelor’s degree in wildlife biology, and master’s and doctoral degrees in
zoology, all from Michigan State University. He and his wife Sandy, a
psychotherapist, reside in New Paltz. They have two children.
His appointment is effective
July 1, 2010 and will continue until July 1, 2011 or until such time as the
Board of Trustees, by resolution, appoints a successor, whichever is later. He
will receive an annual salary of
About SUNY New Paltz
Located in the heart of a
dynamic college town, 90 minutes from metropolitan New York City, SUNY New Paltz is a highly selective
college of about 8,000 undergraduate and graduate students. One of the most well-regarded
public colleges in the nation, SUNY New Paltz delivers an extraordinary number
of majors in Business, Liberal Arts, Sciences, Engineering, Fine and Performing
Arts and Education.
About the State University of New York
The State University of New
York is the largest comprehensive university system in the United States, educating nearly 465,000 students in 7,351 degree and certificate programs on 64
campuses. To learn more about how SUNY creates opportunity, visit www.suny.edu
Be a part of Generation SUNY!
Follow us on Twitter, be our fan on Facebook,
and watch us on YouTube.