Eastern Washington University - President

WA, Cheney

Eastern Washington University (EWU or “Eastern”) seeks an experienced and creative academic leader with a strong commitment to regional comprehensive public universities, an ability to motivate and inspire its students, faculty and staff and a desire to maximize the institution’s full potential to serve as its next president.

Founded in 1882, Eastern Washington University is located in Cheney and Spokane, Washington, with programs offered throughout the state and online. EWU currently offers 150 areas of study in over 70 programs to more than 12,300 enrolled students. Its campus is a driving force for the culture, economy and vitality of the Inland Northwest region. With its main campus in Cheney, Eastern also offers programs in downtown Spokane’s “University District” at both the new Catalyst building (“South Landing”) and on the shared Washington State University Health Sciences Spokane campus. Additional programs exist throughout the state in partnership with community colleges in Bellevue, Everett, Seattle and Vancouver. Nearly half of the student population is first-generation and 31% of students are from historically underrepresented ethnic backgrounds. Eastern is affiliated with Division I of the NCAA and is a member of the Big Sky Conference.

Reporting directly to the Board of Trustees, Eastern’s next president will be expected to provide leadership within a strong shared governance culture and build productive, collaborative and sustainable relationships across the campus with faculty, staff and students and within the local community and region. The president should be a transparent administrator who leads with imagination and creativity to solve some of Eastern’s most pressing challenges, and to further develop its identify as a next generation institution that is nimble and adaptable to changing trends and market demands. The president should be highly committed to student success and developing a long-term enrollment strategy for the future sustainability of the campus. The incoming president should place a high value on and be an advocate for diversity, equity and inclusion, especially as it relates to diversifying the faculty.

The incoming president will be an energetic and experienced leader with the cultural competence and skillset required to lead an institution of Eastern’s profile and complexity. The president will demonstrate a deep and authentic commitment to students – particularly those who are first-generation college students from low income and diverse backgrounds – and genuine willingness to support their needs and success. Likewise, the president should be highly committed to closing the achievement gap of underrepresented students. The president should be experienced at identifying resources to support programs and activities that have been budget constrained or in need of additional resources. The president must also be a consummate relationship builder, experienced working within a collective bargaining environment, and community-minded individual who has a strong desire to become highly visible and active both internally across campus and externally with donors, alumni, business executives and community leaders. A strong capacity for fundraising will be important, as well as management of large, complex budgets. A record of scholarship and a doctoral degree is preferred.

All applications, nominations and inquiries are invited. Applications should include, as separate documents, a CV or resume, diversity statement and a letter of interest addressing the themes in the leadership profile.

WittKieffer is assisting Eastern Washington University in this search. For fullest consideration, application materials should be received by December 1, 2021.

Application materials should be submitted through WittKieffer’s candidate portal by using the buttons below.

Nominations and inquiries can be directed to:

Zachary A. Smith, Ph.D., Jeff Compher and Christine Pendleton


Eastern Washington University is committed to diversity and inclusivity. We recognize that our success is dependent on how well we value, engage, include, and utilize the rich diversity of our faculty, staff, students, and alumni. We believe that prejudice, oppression, and discrimination are detrimental to human development, and that a vibrant and diverse campus community enhances the learning environment of the populations that we serve. We are committed to treating all with dignity and respect, and to working collectively on an ongoing basis to build and maintain a community that understands, celebrates and promotes diversity, while promoting inclusivity at all levels.

EWU does not discriminate in its programs and activities on the basis of race, color, creed, religion, national origin, sex, pregnancy, sexual orientation, gender identity/expression, genetic information, age, marital status, families with children, protected veteran or military status, HIV or hepatitis C, status as a mother breastfeeding her child, or the presence of any sensory, mental, or physical disability or the use of a trained guide dog or service animal by a person with a disability, as provided for and to the extent required by state and federal laws.