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Ray Delgado, News Service (650) 724-5708,

New dean of students selected after eight-month search

Gregory Boardman, the associate vice president for student affairs at Tulane University, has been named the new dean of students at Stanford after an eight-month search.

Boardman succeeds former Dean of Students Marc Wais, who left in March to become vice president of student affairs at New York University. Boardman will begin his new job Feb. 2.

Gene Awakuni, vice provost for student affairs, said he was pleased that the position was being filled by someone who has worked in "nearly every aspect of student affairs. [Boardman] has over 20 years of experience in student affairs work, the last 10-plus having been in senior administration positions," said Awakuni, who made the appointment.

In addition to serving as liaison to the Associated Students, Boardman will oversee the Bechtel International Center, the community centers, the Office of Judicial Affairs, the Office of Multicultural Education, the Office of Student Activities and Tresidder Memorial Union. Christine Griffith, the acting dean of students, will return to her job as associate dean in the Graduate Life Office once Boardman arrives.

Boardman comes to the university with high marks from students at Tulane, where he oversaw programs involving housing and residence life, multicultural affairs, Greek life and religious life.

Boardman has worked at Tulane in a variety of administrative positions since 1988 and said that although he hadn't been looking for a new job when contacted by a search firm hired by Stanford, he decided to go through the interview process anyhow.

"I was happy at Tulane and enjoying my experience here," Boardman said. "I was looking at [the interview] as a great professional experience to go through the process. When it really became serious for me was when I was invited back as one of four candidates."

Boardman said he was impressed with the diversity and high caliber of Stanford's student body when he toured the campus during interviews. He said he would like to help build a stronger campus culture to develop mutually trustworthy relationships with students.

"I have a high commitment to being responsive to student concerns and a commitment to providing high-quality programs and student services," Boardman said.

Boardman also said that he understands the delicate balance his job will require in considering the demands of students when they may clash with the needs of the university.

"What's important here is that the students have a say in any kind of policy review that affects them," Boardman said. "If you've fostered that environment of trust and involved students, I believe you could come up with a mutually acceptable policy."

One of his priorities will be to look at ways in which students can play a larger role in guiding programs geared toward their peers, Boardman said.

"Too often universities want to lead the programs and services that students should do on their own," Boardman said. "Excessive administration programming denies students good learning activities."

Although Boardman has plenty of ideas about fostering the right kind of environments for the departments he will oversee, he said he has no plans for any immediate changes.

"There's going to be a learning curve for me," Boardman said. "As a new administrator, I'm not going to come in and make any significant changes immediately. I would like to get a sense of the place and listen to people."

Awakuni agreed that an important first step will be for Boardman to "understand the Stanford culture and students," but added that Boardman will have an opportunity to make his mark. "Greg needs to take a look at the office and operations and apply his own creative energy and expertise to help move the office forward," Awakuni said.


By Ray Delgado

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