Len Jessup, who has served as dean of the College of Business and Economics at Washington State University since July 2002, has been named acting president of the WSU Foundation and acting vice president for university development.

Jessup will take over for Richard Frisch, who announced last month that he would be leaving the foundation to become vice president for university advancement at Boise State University.

“I am grateful for Dr. Jessup’s willingness to assume this role during our search,” said WSU President V. Lane Rawlins. “His background and skills are ideal for this position, and I feel confident that we can continue to move ahead under his capable leadership. Of course, this is a personal sacrifice for him because he is devoted to his college, but he has wonderful support in that college, and we will work with him to make certain that it does not lose momentum.”

Rawlins said a committee would be identified in the next week or so to oversee the search for Frisch’s permanent successor.

“It will be an honor and pleasure, both personally and professionally, to serve as the interim president of the WSU Foundation,” says Jessup. “I am looking forward to working with all of the people there to position the foundation for even greater levels of success and to help advance WSU as one of the top public research universities in the world. I am flattered to be asked by President Rawlins and Provost Bates to accept this opportunity to work side by side with the foundation’s accomplished professional staff and its vast network of dedicated volunteers.”

Jessup says he will devote the greater percentage of his time to his new assignment, while still being dean and maintaining an active role in the College of Business and Economics. During the period that Jessup leads the foundation, Senior Associate Dean Eric Spangenberg will make many of the executive decisions for the college and have responsibility for its daily operations.

During his tenure as dean, Jessup has led a complete, two-year re-engineering of the business program, which resulted in the successful re-accreditation of the college in spring 2004. He helps lead a university-wide Entrepreneurship and Innovation Initiative, has helped focus the college on innovative approaches to teaching and learning and has guided the development of innovative new facilities such as the Boeing Wireless Classroom of the Future and the James C. Nelson Gallery of Excellence, a computer-based, interactive display of excellence throughout the business program.

Jessup earned a doctorate in management and organizational behavior, with a minor in management information systems, from the University of Arizona-Tucson in 1989. He earned a bachelor’s degree and an MBA degree from California State University-Chico.

Before coming to WSU as coordinator of the MIS program in 2000, Jessup held faculty positions at Indiana University, the University of Idaho, Cal State-San Marcos and Cal State-Long Beach.