Cal Poly Pomona President Soraya M. Coley will be the new presidential sponsor of the American Council on Education Women’s Network Southern California. Cal State San Marcos President, Karen Haynes, held the role of presidential sponsor for the past 13 years. Dr. Haynes announced her retirement in September.
Founded by the American Council on Education (ACE) in 1977, with support of the Carnegie Corporation, the ACE Women’s Network is a national system of networks within each state that facilitate opportunities for women faculty interested in pursuing leadership in higher education. Each state network is led by a state chair and a presidential sponsor who develop programs and events to advance women in higher education careers within that state. California has two networks covering the northern and southern regions of the state.
Dr. Haynes announced the change in an email to network members on December 3. She wrote, “when it comes to the future of higher education, for us and for the next generation of women leaders, our time to act is now.” Speaking of Dr. Coley, she wrote: “Dr. Coley’s passion, relational skills and strategic ability undoubtedly will aid our efforts to advance women’s leadership on campuses across the nation . . . Under Dr. Coley’s leadership, the ACE Women’s Network Southern California will continue to help create cracks in the glass ceiling for women in higher education.”
“I am grateful for the opportunity to support women faculty across our state and hope I can live up to the standard set by Dr. Haynes,” said President Coley. “The opportunities possible through the ACE Women’s Network are critical for diversifying faculty and higher education leadership in California and across the nation.”
Over the course of her career, Dr. Coley has been both a trailblazer and longtime advocate for women faculty. She is the first woman to serve as president of Cal Poly Pomona. She previously served as provost and vice president for academic affairs at Cal State Bakersfield and was a dean and department chair at Cal State Fullerton.
The formal transition of the network operations from San Marcos to Pomona will occur over the span of a year.