WSU shifts administrators’ roles
Washington State University President V. Lane Rawlins is shifting some responsibilities for running the Pullman campus to other administrators to focus more on statewide issues such as fund-raising, lobbying and long-range planning.
In an executive reorganization announced Monday, Rawlins said WSU Provost Robert Bates will become executive vice president for the Pullman campus, giving him the primary role in the day-to-day affairs there.
The reorganization also includes moving the chancellor at the school’s Tri-Cities campus, Larry James, to Pullman to assist Bates.
Rawlins will continue to serve as chief executive officer of the university and will have budget-setting authority, WSU said in a news release. He said the demands of planning and organizing WSU’s future – with branch campuses, extension programs and expanding operations around the state – require increasing commitments outside the main campus.
“The concept of the university as a statewide organization is becoming a reality,” Rawlins said in the news release. “All of these developments place heavy external demands on us.”
As provost since January 2002, Bates has had chief responsibility for all academic programs at WSU. Now, he’ll take on additional budgetary responsibilities as he becomes “kind of the chief operating officer for the Pullman campus,” he said.
Bates said the reorganization is not an attempt by Rawlins to reduce his role in WSU overall.
“There is much to do statewide for Washington State University,” Bates said in an interview Monday. “The broad reach of the land-grant tradition takes us to every part of the state.”
Bates earned a bachelor’s degree in biology from Lewis and Clark College, a master’s in bacteriology and public health at WSU, and a doctorate in virology from Colorado State. Before coming to WSU as an administrator, he was dean of the College of Arts and Sciences at Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University.
James has been lead administrator of the Tri-Cities campus since 1998, serving as dean and then chancellor when the university changed its titles for administrators at regional campuses. A 1970 graduate of WSU, James earned a doctorate in agricultural engineering from the University of Minnesota.
David Lemak, professor of management and director of business programs at WSU Tri-Cities, will serve as interim chancellor of that campus while a search for a permanent replacement is under way.
Lemak joined WSU’s faculty after a 20-year career in the Air Force. He earned a doctoral degree in strategy and organization theory from Arizona State University.