A Large Group of Women Who Have Been Appointed to Higher Education Administrative Posts

Karen White has been named acting executive director of Indiana University Innovation and Commercialization. She is currently serving as research development and commercialization facilitator at Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis.

White is a graduate of Berea College in Kentucky where she majored in chemistry. She holds a master’s degree in organizational leadership and development from Purdue University in West Lafayette, Indiana.

Ariana González Stokas has been named the inaugural vice president for diversity, equity, and inclusion at Barnard College in New York City. She currently serves as dean of inclusive excellence at Bard College in Annandale-on-Hudson, New York.

Dr. González Stokas is a graduate of Bard College where she double-majored in philosophy and studio arts. She holds a Ph.D. in philosophy and education from the Teachers College at Columbia University.

Robin Oliver has been named vice president for university communications and marketing at Ohio University. She currently serves as chief marketing officer at Western Carolina University in Cullowhee, North Carolina.

Oliver is a graduate of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill where she earned degrees in English and music. She holds an MBA from North Carolina State University.

Renae Scott has been named chief information officer at the University of Montana. She has been serving in this role on an interim basis since September 2018. Scott is the first woman to hold the position.

Scott is a graduate of the University of Memphis where she double majored in psychology and mathematics.

Sonya K. Smith has been named dean of admissions and student financial services at Vassar College in Poughkeepsie, New York. She currently serves as director of graduate admission for the Woodrow Wilson School of Public Affairs at Princeton University in New Jersey.

Smith is a graduate of Stanford University where she majored in American studies. She holds a master’s degree in American studies from the University of Michigan.

Sylvia Carey-Butler has been named chief diversity officer at Kennesaw State University in Georgia. She is currently vice chancellor for academic support of inclusive excellence at the University of Wisconsin-Oshkosh.

Dr. Carey-Butler is a graduate of the State University of New York at Oneonta where she majored in liberal arts and sciences. She holds a master’s degree in social science with an emphasis in counseling and a Ph.D. in education and human development.

Diane Crawford has been named the first-ever executive director of institutional culture in the Martin J. Whitman School of Management at Syracuse University. She was president of Diversity & Inclusion Professionals of Central Pennsylvania, an organization that provides professional development and networking for diversity and inclusion practitioners throughout the region.

Crawford holds a bachelor’s degree in applied behavioral science and a master of education degree both from Pennsylvania State University.

Shuk-Mei Ho has been named vice chancellor for research at the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences. She most recently served as the Jacob G. Schmidlapp Professor, chair of the department of environmental health, the Hayden Family Endowed Chair for Cancer Research, and director of the Cincinnati Cancer Center at the University of Cincinnati.

Dr. Ho holds a bachelor’s degree and Ph.D. both from the University of Hong Kong.

Carol Burton has been promoted to vice provost for academic affairs at Western Carolina University in Cullowhee, North Carolina. She has been serving as associate provost for undergraduate studies at the university since 2007.

Dr. Burton hold a bachelor’s degree and master’s degree from Western Carolina University and a doctorate in education from North Carolina State University.

Melissa Fielding has been promoted to deputy chief of police at the University of Virginia. She has served on the force for the past 27 years, most recently as a captain.

Fielding holds a bachelor’s degree in criminal justice from Bluefield College in Virginia. She is also a graduate of the National Criminal Justice Command College and the FBI National Academy.

Katherine M. Lasher has been named associate vice president for the Office of Institutional Equity at Ohio State University. She currently served as the Title IX coordinator and affirmative action officer at Central Michigan University.

Lasher holds a bachelor’s degree in anthropology and a juris doctorate both from the University of Cincinnati.

Stephanie Danette Preston has been promoted to associate dean for graduate educational equity in the Graduate School at Pennsylvania State University. She has been a Penn State administrator since 2009, most recently serving as assistant dean in the Graduate School.

Dr. Preston holds a bachelor’s degree in biology and chemistry and a master’s degree in curriculum and instruction in science education both from Xavier University of Louisiana. She also holds a Ph.D. in curriculum and instruction in science education from Pennsylvania State University.

Melanie Wine Tolan has been named executive director or marketing and communications at Roanoke College in Salem, Virginia. She was executive vice president at Edelman, a global communications firm.

Tolan is a graduate of Denison University in Granville, Ohio, where she majored in communications.

Shiera D. Goff has been named associate director of news and media relations at the University of Massachusetts at Amherst. She was the public information officer with the DeKalb County Police Department and the Office of Communications for the Chief Executive Office of DeKalb County in Georgia.

Goff is a graduate of the State University of New York at Brockport where she majored in communications and minored in history.

Filed Under: Appointments


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  1. Shuk-mei Ho says:

    Thank you for your highlights. Greatly appreciated. Given the number of Asian Americans in Academic Medicine and Higher Education, one would expect a future increases in your highlights. Unfortunately, many of us are first generation Americans and tend to focus on research and scholarly activities. We lack leadership training and exposure. Most importantly we lack mentorship and role models to go into administration.


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