Junn Honored Among Women Leaders in Higher Education

February 08, 2017


Stanislaus State President Ellen Junn has been selected by the magazine Diverse: Issues in Higher Education as one of 25 women who have made a difference in the world by exhibiting leadership while tackling higher education’s toughest challenges.

This is the sixth annual list of women leaders in higher education compiled by the magazine in honor of Women’s History Month. The list will be published in the magazine’s March 9 edition and will be presented during the 99th annual meeting of the American Council on Education, March 11-14, in Washington, D.C.

“Dr. Ellen Junn has a proven track record of promoting diversity within higher education as the former provost and vice president for academic affairs at California State University Dominguez Hills and now as President of Stanislaus State,” Said Jamal Watson, executive editor at Diverse: Issues in Higher Education. “For more than three decades, Dr. Junn has been a fierce advocate for students and understands the importance of providing educational opportunities for all. We salute Dr. Junn for her tireless advocacy on behalf of students and look forward to following her work at Stanislaus State over the many years to come.”

Junn, who became Stan State’s 11th president on July 1, 2016, built her academic career within the California State University system, serving for the last 31 years in various teaching and leadership positions at six CSU campuses. Junn has consistently displayed a gift for helping non-traditional students succeed. She is widely published and has written professional journal articles on topics such as supporting the success of underserved students, the importance of university-community engagement, and strategies for supporting non-tenure track faculty, especially women and minorities.

In her role as president at Stanislaus State, Junn is already making student success and diversity a priority with the launch of the First-Generation Presidential Scholars initiative this spring. Stan State serves a six-county region in the Central Valley and more than 74 percent of the student body identifies as first-generation. It is the first of its kind at Stanislaus State and the first in the California State University system to affect and attract students from a specific geographic footprint.

“President Junn is an exemplary leader and fierce advocate for the California State University’s diverse community of students, faculty and staff,” said CSU Chancellor Timothy P. White. “Alongside her fellow CSU presidents, Ellen advances the value of inclusive excellence in order to transform individual lives and society as a whole.”

Dr. Junn holds a bachelor’s degree in experimental and cognitive psychology from the University of Michigan, where she graduated cum laude.  She earned both a master’s and Ph.D. in cognitive and developmental psychology from Princeton University.  In addition, she holds a Management Development Program Certificate from Harvard University, and a CSU-Knight Collaborative Program Certificate from the University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton Institute for Research in Higher Education.

Diverse: Issues in Higher Education launched in 1984 as Black Issues in Higher Education and is the only national bi-weekly news magazine focusing on matters of access and opportunity for all in the nation’s colleges.

Here are this year’s honorees (alphabetical order):

  • Edith Bartley, Spokesperson & Advocate for Diplomatic Families & Victims of International Terrorism
  • Carrie L. Billy, President, The American Indian Higher Education Consortium
  • Dr. Khalilah L. Brown-Dean, Associate Professor of Political Science, Quinnipiac University
  • Dr. Mary Schmidt Campbell, President, Spelman College
  • Dr. Constance Carroll, Chancellor of the San Diego Community College District
  • Dr. Kim Cassidy, President, Bryn Mawr College
  • Dr. Doris Ching, 2017 Acting Director of the University of Hawaii System Academy for Creative Media
  • Dr. Marsha J. Tyson Darling, Professor of History and Interdisciplinary Studies; Director, African, Black and Caribbean Studies, Adelphi University
  • Peggy Davis, Athletic Director, Virginia State University
  • Dr. Stella Flores, Associate Professor of Higher Education; Director of Access and Equity, Steinhardt Institute for Higher Education Policy, New York University
  • Maureen Hoyler, President, Council for Opportunity in Education
  • Dr. Paula Johnson, President, Wellesley College
  • Dr. Ellen N. Junn, President, California State University, Stanislaus
  • Melissa Lazarin, Senior Policy Advisor for Center for American Progress
  • Dr. Eboni Marshall-Turman, Assistant Professor of Theology and African American Religion, Yale Divinity School
  • Dr. Angelyn Mitchell, Associate Professor in English and African American Studies Departments; Founding Director of African American Studies, Georgetown University
  • Sherika Montgomery, Assistant Commissioner/SWA, Big South Conference
  • Dr. Susana Muñoz, Assistant Professor of Education, Colorado State University
  • Dr. Yolanda Page, Vice President for Academic Affairs, Dillard University
  • Dr. Barbara Ransby, Distinguished Professor of African American Studies, Gender and Women’s Studies, and History at the University of Illinois at Chicago
  • Dr. Lisa Rubin, Assistant Professor, Student Services in Intercollegiate Athletics, Kansas State University
  • E.R. Shipp, Associate Professor, Global School of Journalism and Communication, Morgan State University
  • Dr. Manisha Sinha, Draper Chair in Early American History, University of Connecticut Storrs
  • Cheryl L. Smith, Senior Vice President, Public Policy & Government Affairs, United Negro College Fund
  • Dr. Heather Ann Thompson, Professor of History, Department of Afro-American and African Studies, Residential College, and Department of History, The University of Michigan