BATON ROUGE – Governor Bobby Jindal recently announced the appointment of University of Louisiana System President Sandra K. Woodley as a Louisiana member of the Southern Regional Education Board (SREB) through 2016. SREB is a nonprofit, nonpartisan organization that works with 16 member states to improve public education from pre-K through Ph.D. Member states are Alabama, Arkansas, Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maryland, Mississippi, North Carolina, Oklahoma, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, Virginia and West Virginia.
The Board includes the governor and four gubernatorial appointees from each member state, including at least one state legislator and one educator. Woodley joins Louisiana members Governor Jindal, Commissioner of Higher Education Jim Purcell, Senator Francis Thompson, and Superintendent of Education John White. Governor Jindal also serves as Chair of the SREB Board.
“This is truly an honor,” said Woodley. “Having worked in multiple SREB states, I value the role this policy board plays in setting goals for pre-K through higher education. I appreciate the opportunity Governor Jindal has provided for me to engage in shaping public policy with such a distinguished group of individuals committed to working across state lines.”
SREB was created in 1948 by Southern governors and legislators who recognized the link between education and economic vitality. To this day, the organization maintains its focus on critical issues that hold the promise of improving quality of life by advancing public education.
“Dr. Woodley’s experience across a range of higher education systems and institutions, as well as her work with state government, will be a great asset in our work to advance education and improve the social and economic life of the region,” said SREB President Dave Spence
Woodley became the eighth President of the UL System in January 2013. The UL System has nine universities under its governance: Grambling State University, Louisiana Tech University, McNeese State University, Nicholls State University, Northwestern State University, Southeastern Louisiana University, the University of Louisiana at Lafayette, the University of Louisiana at Monroe, and the University of New Orleans. As the largest higher education system in the state, the UL System serves over 92,000 students with a total operating budget of over $762 million.
Prior to joining the UL System, Woodley served as Vice Chancellor for Strategic Initiatives for the University of Texas System where for two years she was responsible for strategic planning, policy research, and accountability for its 16 academic and health institutions. She also served as Strategic Planner and Chief Financial Officer for the Arizona University System; Vice President for Finance, Planning and Performance for the Kentucky Council on Postsecondary Education; and Associate Executive Director for the Alabama Commission of Higher Education overseeing finance, performance, and institutional research and information systems.
Early in her career she served as the senior financial analyst for the Alabama Legislative Fiscal Office responsible for public community and technical colleges and universities, the Alabama Commission on Higher Education, and economic development agencies in Alabama. Woodley also served for four years as the Coordinator of the Economic Forecasting Group in the Center for Government and Public Affairs at Auburn University.
A non-traditional student, Woodley started out in a community college before earning a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration and a Master of Business Administration at Auburn University. Her doctorate in Business Administration and Management was earned at Nova Southeastern University. Her dissertation was A critical analyses of the effect of performance funding and budgeting systems on university performance.
Woodley is a native of Weaver, Alabama, and is married to Stan Woodley. She has three children: Leah, Jonathan, and Rebecca.
ABOUT THE UL SYSTEM: The University of Louisiana System is the largest higher education system in Louisiana enrolling over 92,000 students at Grambling State University, Louisiana Tech University, McNeese State University, Nicholls State University, Northwestern State University, Southeastern Louisiana University, the University of Louisiana at Lafayette, the University of Louisiana at Monroe, and the University of New Orleans.