Rodolfo Arévalo is retiring and ending his career in education on July 15, after eight years as president at Eastern Washington University.
During his tenure, he steered the college through the state’s economic crisis, has seen record enrollment, facilitated campus development — including Roos Field’s iconic red turf and the first new residence hall in 40 years — and developed a plan to improve student retention and graduation rates.
“President Arévalo’s leadership and accomplishments during this historic time at Eastern have been outstanding,” said Paul Tanaka, chair of EWU’s board of trustees. “Dr. Arévalo’s thoughtful and measured approach to the many challenges and opportunities the past eight years has put the university, and its students, in a remarkable position to succeed.”
“I speak for the entire board when I say Dr. Arévalo will be greatly missed, and we wish him well in his retirement.”
Arévalo, now 67, has worked in education for 42 years. He started at Eastern in April 2006. He’s the first Latino president at any public four-year college or university in Washington.
He went on medical leave for several months in December 2008 due to a bout with cancer. University officials said his health is great and that’s not why he’s retiring, university spokesman Dave Meany said: He’s just retiring.
Mike Westfall, vice president for university advancement and one of Arévalo’s first hires, described his boss, “Dr. A,” as “very thoughtful, very meticulous and very generous as a leader.”