BATON ROUGE, La. – Peter J. Fos has been selected president of the University of New Orleans by the Board of Supervisors for the University of Louisiana System. Fos, a New Orleans native and UNO graduate becomes the sixth leader and the first president in the history of UNO.
“This is a dream come true,” said Fos. “I still wear my UNO class ring every day and my wife, Lori, and I carry our alumni cards in our wallets. I promise you will not find a president who will work as hard for UNO as me.”
Currently a professor and program director of health policy and systems management at Louisiana State University Health Sciences Center in New Orleans, Fos has extensive experience as an administrator and faculty member with a proven record of conducting research, fundraising, developing collaborative relationships with other academic institutions, and implementing institutional effectiveness and student success programs.
In making the motion, UL System Board Member Andre Coudrain said Fos’ strengths were his broad out-of-state experience coupled with his deep New Orleans roots.
“Dr. Fos is a UNO alum; he has roots here, but his professional experience has been elsewhere. That gives him a great perspective. He has been successful in senior leadership positions at universities comparable to UNO, and he has Lori at his side, a great spouse and partner, which is an asset not to be overlooked,” said Coudrain.
Among Fos’ previous academic positions were provost and executive vice president for academic affairs at the University of Texas at Tyler, dean of the college of health at the University of Southern Mississippi, and various administrative and teaching positions at institutions including Tulane University. He received his undergraduate degree in biological sciences at UNO, a doctor of dental surgery at LSUHSC, and a master of public health and doctor of philosophy in health care decision analysis at Tulane University.
While details of Fos’ appointment are yet to be worked out, his start date could be as early Feb. 1, 2012.
He succeeds Timothy P. Ryan, who resigned as chancellor in September 2010. Joe M. King has served as interim chancellor while UNO has sought a new permanent leader. Earlier this month, UNO officially moved from the LSU System to the University of Louisiana System. In the UL System, the chief executive of a university is a president.
“I am pleased that UNO is in our system, and I am excited about its future with Dr. Fos serving as UNO’s president,” said UL System President Randy Moffett.
Enrolling almost 11,000 students, the University of New Orleans is classified by the Carnegie Foundation as a doctoral institution with high research activity. For more than 50 years, it has been one of the city’s foremost public resources, offering a diverse set of world-class, research-based programs, advancing shared knowledge and adding to the city’s industry, culture and economy. Since 1958, UNO has educated students from all 64 Louisiana parishes, all 50 states in the United States and more than 100 countries.
ABOUT THE UL SYSTEM: The University of Louisiana System is the largest higher education system in the state enrolling about 94,000 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.
Photo #1 Cutline: Newly appointed University of New Orleans President Peter J. Fos stands with his wife, Lori Fos.
Photo #2 Cutline: University of New Orleans President Peter J. Fos is congratulated by UNO students.