Leadership Change Announced at University of Washington Bothell

Tuesday, October 9, 2012
CONTACT: Richard Penny - (425) 352-3395, rpenny@uwb.edu

Kenyon S. Chan, Chancellor of the University of Washington Bothell since 2007, announced he will complete his tenure as the college’s second Chancellor at the end of the 2012-13 academic year. Chan informed the campus of his decision at its October 9 Town Hall meeting.

"In the slightly more than five years that Kenyon Chan has served as Chancellor, UW Bothell has grown into a renowned and valued resource for the state of Washington," said University of Washington President Michael Young. "The campus is particularly known as a center for innovation and creativity in higher education, and I attribute that reputation—and the reality upon which it is based—largely to Kenyon’s outstanding leadership."

Chan began his tenure as Chancellor of the University of Washington Bothell in July 2007. After his appointment, UW Bothell underwent a profound transformation – doubling the number of students served and tripling the number of degree programs offered – all while becoming one of the most diverse four-year campuses in the nation.

In a letter emailed to the students, faculty, staff, alumni and friends of the campus, Chan wrote, "It is my great honor to be Chancellor of the University of Washington Bothell. The state of the university is excellent with a strong and vital future ahead. Therefore, it is with great confidence in that future that I have decided to leave my role as Chancellor which allows the university to seek a new leader for the exciting years ahead. I will continue as Chancellor through this academic year and return to my own scholarly work on July 1, 2013."

Chan presided over the University’s Bothell campus during an unprecedented time of growth and success. Some of the accomplishments during that period include:

  • Growing campus enrollment from 1567 to more than 3500, making UW Bothell the fastest –growing public university in the state;
  • Developing and offering 16 new degree programs, particularly in science and technology;
  • Establishing student housing;
  • Expanding campus facilities to accommodate up to 5,000 students in the future;
  • Increasing research funding and charitable giving by tenfold;
  • Strengthening collaboration with industry and community partners.

Chan concluded his letter by writing, "Of course, my decision is made with very mixed emotions. I have had the privilege of leading this campus during a period of extraordinary growth in the midst of many challenges to higher education. I have also had the great opportunity to work with outstanding faculty, staff and students as well as strong community partners. At the same time, after many years of administrative work, it is time for me to return to my roots as a scholar and teacher."

Prior to his appointment at UW Bothell, Chan was Dean of the College and Vice-President for Academic Affairs at Occidental College. While at Occidental he had the distinction of serving as Interim President for an academic year during a time of institutional transition. Among his many accomplishments as Interim President, Chan raised a record sum of over $21.1 million, worked to strengthen trustee and alumni relations, restructured and renovated the student affairs division and student government, and initiated campus climate and diversity renewal strategies to improve relationships among students, faculty, staff, and administration.

Chan’s previous administrative positions include: Dean of Bellarmine College at Loyola Marymount University, Director of the Liberal Studies Program, and Founding Chair of the Asian American Studies Department at California State University, Northridge.

"We will initiate a national search for an outstanding successor to Chancellor Chan," said UW Provost Ana Mari Cauce. "We look forward to the active participation of students, alumni, and faculty and community members in the process. Our goal is to make the appointment of UW Bothell’s next chancellor by the spring."

About UW Bothell: The University of Washington Bothell provides an internationally and nationally-ranked university experience that inspires innovation and creativity. With more than 30 degrees, options, certificates and concentrations, its curriculum emphasizes close student-faculty interaction, interaction and critical thinking. UW Bothell builds regional partnerships, inspires change, creates knowledge, shares discoveries and prepares students for leadership in the state of Washington and beyond. For more information, visit www.uwb.edu.