Dr. Donald V. DeRosa was President of University of the Pacific from 1995 to 2009. Pacific, one of the West's most distinctive, student-centered national universities, enrolls about 6,400 students in the liberal arts and sciences and eight professional programs from undergraduate through the doctorate, on three campuses in Stockton, Sacramento, and San Francisco.
During his tenure at Pacific, Dr. DeRosa led the creation of distinctive, nationally ranked programs, centers, and institutes, elevated national visibility, raised student selectivity, increased applications 400%, expanded student leadership development programs based on whole-student learning and social and emotional intelligence, dramatically improved university financial strength, led a comprehensive campaign that raised over $330 million, expanded partnerships between the University, business, and community, and launched an initiative to enhance institutional sustainability practices.
Dr. DeRosa's presidency has been called transformative and historic by Pacific's Board of Regents, who named the DeRosa University Center (opened 2008) in honor of his achievements. He is credited for program and enrollment growth with a rigorous commitment to quality, innovation and collaboration. Under his leadership, distinctive new programs such as the Brubeck Institute have gained widespread national recognition. He led successful re-accreditation reviews, multiple strategic planning initiatives, increased external funding more than 400% to $51.5 million, and secured a $100 million estate gift. During his tenure, the University's endowment more than tripled, to $223 million, its bond rating improved three times to A2, and over $200 million was invested in a wide range of facilities construction and renovation projects on all three campuses. Under his direction, the University gained a national ranking as a top 100 institution, was ranked as a top 40 "Best Value" by USNWR for eight straight years, and was the first in the nation to provide a guarantee of graduation in four years. DeRosa has led dramatic growth in international programs and study abroad, co-curricular and recreation programs, community service, and adult education for the region.
DeRosa launched a distinctive initiative in social and emotional intelligence as part of his focus on educating the whole person for responsible leadership, a program for which Pacific is emerging as a national leader. He creatively promoted experiential learning in the development of engaged student citizen leaders and was a champion of affordability and access.
Previously, Dr. DeRosa served as Provost (chief academic officer) and Dean of the Graduate School/Associate Vice Chancellor for Research at University of North Carolina at Greensboro (enrollment 17,000) and Chair of the Department of Psychology and Professor at Bowling Green State University. He also served as an American Council on Education Fellow in the Office of the Chancellor at University of California, at San Diego. A professor and researcher in the field of psychology, he authored or co-authored over 20 publications on memory, cognition, pedagogy, and leadership, and presented numerous papers at professional meetings. He developed and led simulations on academic leadership for deans and department chairs for the American Council on Education's Center for Leadership Development.
Born in New Rochelle, N.Y., near New York City, Dr. DeRosa holds a bachelor's degree in psychology with a minor in history from American International College and a master's degree and doctorate in psychology from Kent State University. He is the recipient of the 2009 President's Award from NASPA-Student Affairs Administrators in Higher Education and the Honorary Alumni Award from University of the Pacific. He has served on the Commission on Leadership and Institutional Advancement of the American Council on Education, the Honorary Board of the Brubeck Institute, chaired by Clint Eastwood, and the Board of Directors of the Big West Conference, the San Joaquin County Partnership and the Business Council of San Joaquin County.