CSU Trustees Appoint Leslie E. Wong as President of San Francisco State University

SAN FRANCISCO, MAY 10, 2012 -- The California State University Board of Trustees has named Leslie E. Wong, president of Northern Michigan University, as president of San Francisco State.

A photo of Leslie E. Wong

"I am pleased and honored to be chosen as the next president of San Francisco State, and look forward to working closely with students, faculty, and staff," said Wong.  "SFSU's commitment to social justice, its diverse student body and its position as a leader in the global educational arena make for a vibrant and forward thinking campus community."

Wong was among the finalists for the position to succeed retiring President Robert Corrigan, who has served as SFSU president since 1988.  He is expected to begin his new position as president on August 1.  

“Dr. Wong brings a strong record of accomplishments, academic experience and exceptional leadership skills to his new position as president of San Francisco State," said CSU Trustee Roberta Achtenberg, chair of the presidential search committee.  "He understands the unique mission of the university, and its commitment and respect for scholarship, freedom and diversity.  His vision for the future of SFSU is one that incorporates the multiculturalism of San Francisco and beyond, and makes him an excellent choice to lead the university."

Since 2004, Wong has served as president of Northern Michigan University, which is located in Marquette with an enrollment of approximately 10,000 students.  Wong has spearheaded a number of initiatives during his tenure at NMU including improved academic quality; developed a comprehensive strategic plan for the university; secured funding for the construction of a new academic building; dramatically increased fundraising and grants, and integrated technology throughout the campus.

From 1999 to 2004, Wong served as vice president of academic affairs at Valley City State University in North Dakota where he was responsible for leading and sustaining technological initiatives within the curriculum, as well as fostering corporate, regional and international partnerships.  He was also responsible for the leadership of six academic divisions, the information technology center, library registrar, mentoring academy and undergraduate research programs.

Wong also held several leadership positions with the University of Southern Colorado in Pueblo (now Colorado State University at Pueblo) from 1996 to 1999, including serving concurrently as provost and academic vice president and interim president in 1997.  He also served as academic dean and a member of the faculty at The Evergreen State College in Olympia, Washington.  Early in his career, Wong was a psychology instructor at Pierce College in Tacoma, Washington.

He holds a bachelor's degree in psychology from Gonzaga University, a master's degree in experimental psychology from Eastern Washington University, and a Ph.D. in educational psychology from Washington State University.


This release has been updated to reflect the correct years during which Wong served as vice president of academic affairs at Valley City State University in North Dakota.



The California State University is the largest system of senior higher education in the country, with 23 campuses, approximately 412,000 students and 43,000 faculty and staff.  The CSU awards about 90,000 degrees annually and since its creation in 1961 has conferred nearly 2.6 million.  Celebrating its 50th anniversary this year, the CSU is renowned for the quality of its teaching and for the job-ready graduates it produces.  The mission of the CSU is to provide high-quality, affordable education to meet the ever changing needs of the people of California.  With its commitment to excellence, diversity and innovation, the CSU is the university system that is working for California.

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