WSU Spokane appoints ex-state Senator Brown as chancellor

By WSU NewsNovember 29, 2012 

SPOKANE, Wash. -- Lisa Brown, the former Washington State Senate Majority Leader, has been named the chancellor at Washington State University Spokane.

She will replace Brian Pitcher and begin in January.

Brown spearheaded the health sciences education and research initiative in Spokane. She is an associate professor in the graduate level Organizational Leadership Program at Gonzaga University.

"The energy and momentum surrounding development of the WSU Spokane campus as a hub for high quality academic programs in the health sciences is palpable throughout the community, state and region," said WSU President Elson S. Floyd in a news release. "Dr. Brown is well positioned to maintain that momentum and take the program to the next level. We are proud and happy to welcome her to Washington State University."

Brown said, "I look forward to contributing to ongoing conversations on this topic in my new role, and I will especially enjoy continuing my service to our state in this capacity."

Elected to the state Senate in 1996, Brown became Democratic Leader in 2003 - serving as Senate Majority Leader 2005-2012 and Minority Leader 2003-2005.

After serving two terms in the House (1992-1996), she was elected to the Senate where, in her first term, she was appointed chair of the Ways and Means Committee.

In 2005, she became the first Democratic woman in the state to hold the position of Senate Majority Leader, making her among the longest serving leaders in recent Washington history.

Born and raised in Robinson, Ill., Brown studied economics at the University of Illinois, in Champaign-Urbana, and at the University of Colorado, in Boulder, where she received a Ph.D.

Floyd said he looks forward to calling on Pitcher's expertise in Spokane as well as at WSU's other urban campuses at Tri-Cities and Vancouver.

"Dr. Pitcher has ably led the Spokane campus since 2005 and will continue in a senior role with the WSU Spokane leadership team," Floyd said.

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