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David Reese to Serve as Vice President, Chief of Staff, General Counsel, and Board Secretary

April 03, 2018

  • David Reese will begin transitioning into the role in May, and will start working full-time in late July.

President Wim Wiewel has selected David Reese as Lewis & Clark’s next general counsel, board secretary, and inaugural chief of staff. Reese, who has served in various roles at Portland State University (PSU) for the last decade, will start in May.

“David’s experience with Oregon’s legal and civic landscapes, as well as his expertise in higher education law and policy are well suited to this demanding position,” said Wiewel. “David and I have worked well together in the past, and I know he will be ready to serve Lewis & Clark’s mission from day one.”

Reese will be responsible for a broad and complex portfolio of assignments, including direction and management of President Wiewel’s agenda and priorities, and service to a variety of stakeholders. In the general counsel role, Reese will manage all legal affairs of Lewis & Clark. He will also serve as the secretary to the Board of Trustees.

“I’m honored to be given this opportunity to once again work closely with Wim and to join a stellar team at Lewis & Clark,” said Reese. “Throughout this process, I’ve met faculty, staff, and students from all three campuses, and I look forward to serving them in this new role. I’m especially excited to be joining a place where the care for each other is evident and where I can get to know a significant portion of the community.”

Reese, who grew up outside Detroit, Michigan, completed his undergraduate education at Wayne State University and earned his law degree from the University of Michigan Law School. He worked in private practice at Stoel Rives LLP in Portland before joining the office of Oregon Governor Ted Kulongoski as general counsel. Reese left the governor’s office for PSU, where he was eventually promoted to general counsel and secretary to the board of trustees.

This appointment concludes a search that began in December under the direction of an institutional search advisory committee, with assistance from Summit Search Solutions:

  • Anna Gonzalez (chair), Dean of Students
  • Joe Becker, Executive Director of Public Affairs and Communications
  • David Ellis, Vice President, Secretary, and General Counsel
  • Scott Fletcher, Dean of the Graduate School of Education and Counseling
  • Jason Holmgren, Emergency Response Coordinator
  • Dawn Odell, Associate Professor of Art History
  • Marilyn Sbardellati, Transportation and Parking Program Manager
  • Janet Steverson, Dean for Diversity and Inclusion and Douglas K. Newell Professor of Teaching Excellence at Lewis & Clark Law School

Reese will begin transitioning into the role in May, and will start working full-time in late July. He will take over general counsel and board secretary responsibilities from David Ellis, who is retiring after serving in that role since the position was created in 2004.

“I can’t thank David Ellis enough for his service to Lewis & Clark over all these years in many roles,” said President Wiewel. “His time as interim president and his counsel to me over the past year especially have been invaluable in my early days here. And I know he’ll impart much good advice to David Reese during the transition. Thank you, David.”