Brenda Alling, Office of Marketing and Communications, WSU Vancouver, 360-546-9601, firstname.lastname@example.org
James Tinney, WSU News, 509-335-8055, email@example.com
By James Tinney, WSU News
Netzhammer named new WSU Vancouver chancellor
PULLMAN, Wash. - Emile C. (Mel) Netzhammer, III, who has served as provost and vice president for academic affairs for Keene State (N.H.) College since 2006, has been named the new chancellor of Washington State University Vancouver.
"We are extremely pleased to make this announcement. Under founding Chancellor Hal Dengerink, WSU Vancouver became an instrumental part of its community and a cornerstone of the Washington State University system,” said Elson S. Floyd, president of Washington State University. "In Mel Netzhammer, I believe the search committee has found an ideal person to continue and expand the campus’s mission.”
"We had an extraordinary pool of finalists who brought outstanding attributes to the table,” said interim chancellor Lynn Valenter. "As with any high-level position, it comes down to fit. Mel offers a dynamic leadership style that should make a positive difference for our students and our community.”
Netzhammer was one of four candidates invited to WSU Vancouver to meet with members of the campus community and the community at large.
"I am honored that President Floyd and the WSU community have invited me to be the next chancellor of WSU Vancouver. I am keenly aware of the legacy I am inheriting and the incredible work that’s gone on here,” Netzhammer said.
"I believe a university should be a steward of its place, and the strong connection between the campus and the Vancouver community drew me to the position,” he said. "I’m eager to work with my new colleagues to build upon the existing foundation to deliver academic excellence and student success that positively impact the community, the environment and the world.”
Gay Selby, associate clinical professor of education at WSU Vancouver, served as chair of the 17-member search committee.
"The search committee was unanimous in its recommendation of Mel as the new chancellor,” she said. "In addition to his meeting the preferred qualifications, he connected on a personal level with members. He seemed very authentic and approachable - two qualities that resonated with the committee.”
Background in communication, administration
A native of New Orleans, Netzhammer earned his bachelor’s degree in communication from Loyola University in New Orleans. He earned his master’s degree in mass communication and Ph.D. in communication from the University of Utah.
After graduation, he became assistant professor in communication at Buffalo State College in 1987. He has published research on minority voices in the media and on free speech issues.
He served as communication department chair and interim associate dean of arts and humanities at Buffalo State before becoming interim associate vice president for enrollment management in 1998. He became dean of arts and humanities in 1999 and served in that position for seven years, overseeing academic services for 2,200 students.
Netzhammer then accepted the position of provost and vice president for academic affairs at Keene State, a public college with an enrollment of about 5,700 students. During his tenure there, he helped develop and implement an academic plan for the campus, helped establish the Center for Engagement, Learning and Teaching, and provided leadership for the accreditation process by the New England Association of Schools and Colleges.
He has been active in both fundraising and governmental relations, as New Hampshire public universities were hit hard by reductions in state funding.
Netzhammer, 52, is expected to assume his new duties on July 2. He will be moving to Vancouver with his partner, Lee Faver, a counseling psychologist.
Greenwood/Asher and Associates assisted in the nationwide search. Information regarding the search is available here
About WSU Vancouver
Formally established as a branch campus in 1989, WSU Vancouver serves more than 3,000 students on its Salmon Creek campus. It offers 18 bachelor's degrees, nine master's degrees, two doctorate degrees and more than 37 fields of study.