President Barry Glassner Steps Down; David Ellis Named Interim President

Barry Glassner has informed the Board of Trustees that he is stepping down as president to focus his time and attention on his writing and his role as a public intellectual.

Barry Glassner has informed the Board of Trustees that he is stepping down as president to focus his time and attention on his writing and his role as a public intellectual.

“With the climate of fear in our country at an especially high level following the recent election cycle, this is a critical time for me to contribute to the public discourse,” Glassner says. “Over this next period, I plan to devote myself to my research, writing, and speaking before returning to the faculty.”

Glassner has served as Lewis & Clark’s president since the fall of 2010. The author of numerous books and articles published in prominent academic journals and national newspapers, Glassner came to Lewis & Clark from the University of Southern California, where he was executive vice provost. In 2014, he was elected as a national delegate to the board of directors of the National Association of Independent Colleges and Universities.

“We thank Barry for his service as president,” says Scott Dubchansky, the chair of Lewis & Clark’s Board of Trustees, “and wish him success in this next chapter in his career.”

Glassner says he is most proud of having helped to advance the college’s reputation nationally, appointing the college’s first dean of diversity and inclusion, augmenting scholarship funds for students, increasing opportunities for faculty-student collaborations, and advancing the college’s sustainability rankings.

“My faculty colleagues at Lewis & Clark never cease to inspire with their scholarship, creative work, and devotion to our remarkable students,” Glassner adds. “It has been an honor to have the opportunity to support them, the college’s dedicated staff, and the Board of Trustees during a challenging period for liberal arts colleges, law schools, and schools of education. I am also grateful to the members of the Executive Council, who are some of the hardest- working, most talented, and most delightful people I’ve worked with in my career.”

The Board of Trustees has accepted President Glassner’s resignation and has appointed David Ellis—current vice president, secretary, and general counsel —as interim president, effective immediately. Ellis has served in his current role for the past 13 years, and previously served as associate dean and director of Business Law Programs at Lewis & Clark Law School. For the past two years, David has taught higher education law for the master’s degree program in student affairs administration at Lewis & Clark’s Graduate School of Education and Counseling.

“Because of his long and dedicated service to Lewis & Clark, Interim President Ellis is well prepared to continue the good work being done, and help position the college for the future,” says Dubchansky.

Over the past decade, Ellis has served as a member of the United Educators Legal Advisory Board, the National Association of Independent Colleges and Universities Legal Advisory Board, as board chair and member of the Advisory Board of Hoyt Arboretum Friends, on the City of Portland’s Economic Development Policy Expert Group, and on a variety of advisory committees concerning land use regulation of colleges, universities, and hospitals in Portland.

“Lewis & Clark’s strength comes from its community—its students, faculty, staff, alumni, and Board of Trustees. I very much look forward to collaborating with this talented and committed community to advance opportunities for our students and fulfill the mission of the college,” says Ellis. “I’m especially eager to meet with Lewis & Clark alumni to benefit from their thoughts and ideas.”

The Board will form a committee of trustees and other representatives from the college to begin planning for the search for a permanent president.