Leslie E. Wong to be invested as 13th president

Leslie E. Wong will be formally invested as SF State's 13th president during a ceremony March 14, part of a week of activities celebrating the University's accomplishments and looking toward the future. The ceremony, which will begin at 2 p.m. in McKenna Theatre, will culminate with the presentation of the presidential medallion and President Wong's inaugural address.

A photo of SF State President Leslie E. Wong.

Leslie E. Wong will be formally invested as SF State's 13th president on March 14. Credit: Lisa Sze

The week's theme is "XLR8@SF State," or "accelerating progress."

The investiture also celebrates a homecoming for President Wong and his wife, Phyllis, Bay Area natives who met at Bishop O'Dowd High School in Oakland. Before coming to SF State, Wong served for nine years as the president of Northern Michigan University in Marquette, Mich.

"It has been wonderful to return home to the Bay Area and I am humbled and honored to lead the incredible students, faculty and staff at SF State," President Wong said. "This is a remarkable institution with a legacy of devotion to our community. The task in front of us now is to bring its full force to bear for the students we serve."

Unlike political inaugurations, university investitures often take place some time after a new president has assumed office, allowing time to get to know the campus as well as students, faculty, staff and community members. Shortly after arriving at SF State on Aug. 1, President Wong began working with the entire campus community to develop a long-term strategic plan that will guide the University's future. He has also dedicated himself to engaging with students, including frequent attendance at Student Life and athletic events. During investiture week, President Wong and his wife, Phyllis, will join students during a day of community service, a 5K walk/run and at a late-night dance party.

The investiture ceremony itself will begin with a procession of University faculty, deans and distinguished guests, followed by congratulatory remarks from students, faculty, staff, alumni and friends. Associated Students, Inc. President Adenike Hamilton will join President Wong on stage, and student Christa Laosantos will sing the national anthem. Douglas Roberts, trustee emeritus at Northern Michigan University, will provide the keynote address. Following the keynote, California State University Board of Trustees Chair A. Robert Linscheid and CSU Chancellor Timothy P. White will present President Wong with a special medallion representing his symbolic investment with the power and responsibility of the presidency.

The logo for SF State's investiture, reading

The Alexander String Quartet, SF State's longtime quartet-in-residence, will perform along with the student performers of the Holloway String Quartet. Professor of Latina/Latino Studies and San Francisco Poet Laureate Alejandro Murguia will give a reading. Rev. Stephen A. Privett, president of the University of San Francisco, will provide an invocation.

Prior to the ceremony, students, faculty and staff will gather in Malcolm X Plaza for music, food and activities. A reception open to all will be held in Jack Adams Hall in the Cesar Chavez Student Center following the ceremony.

In addition to SF State and Northern Michigan University, President Wong has served in administrative and academic roles at Valley City State University in Valley City, N.D., University of Southern Colorado in Pueblo, Colo., The Evergreen State College in Olympia, Wash. and Pierce College in Tacoma, Wash. 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.

To learn more about investiture and see a full schedule of investiture week activities, visit http://presidentialinvestiture.sfsu.edu

-- Jonathan Morales