President’s Transition Committee

President’s Transition Committee established

Following the news of the election of President-elect Dr. Deana Porterfield, who begins on July 1, the chair of the Board of Trustees formed a committee to see to preparation details during this next five months prior to Dr. Porterfield’s arrival on campus. Dr. Porterfield has specifically asked the Transition Committee to act as the point of contact for her while she remains still fully employed at Roberts Wesleyan University.

We are committed to making the most of this interim period to provide a smooth and effective transition. Joining me on the President’s Transition Committee is Leland Saunders, faculty chair, Alison Estep, associate vice president for University Communications, Kim Sawers, vice president for Business and Finance, Ruth Jacobsen, executive assistant to the president, and Dean Kato, chair of the Board of Trustees.

The committee will focus on a number of logistical matters. We will screen and prioritize requests from internal constituencies who hope to meet with or communicate with the president-elect prior to July 1. This group will also develop a list of individuals and groups (internal and external) to recommend to the new president that she might consider giving priority attention to upon her arrival in July. The Senior Leadership Team and other administrators, Faculty Council, and executive committee of the trustees will each be important to the new president’s agenda setting.

If there are ideas, recommendations, requests for communication with Dr. Porterfield, etc., please forward that information to the appropriate person:

  • Faculty – Leland Saunders (
  • Staff (including senior leaders and department managers) Kim Sawers (
  • Media and public – Alison Estep (
  • Logistical matters in preparation for the arrival of the new President – Ruth Jacobsen (
  • Board members, alumni, and donors – Dean Kato
  • Committee lead, and primary contact with Dr. Porterfield during the transition period – Don Mortenson (

Thank you,

Don Mortenson, committee lead
Presidential Transition Committee