News and Events

Presidential Announcement


Dr. Christine M. Riordan, President-Elect

Message from Robert B. Willumstad, Chairman of the Board of Trustees and Search Committee Co-chair

Dr. Christine M. Riordan Elected 10th President of Adelphi University

Today marks an important milestone in the history of Adelphi University. After nearly 15 years of transformative and inspirational leadership by Adelphi University President Dr. Robert A. Scott, the Board of Trustees announces the election of Dr. Christine M. Riordan as the 10th president of the University. Dr. Riordan will become the first woman to lead Adelphi when she succeeds Dr. Scott on July 1, 2015.

Dr. Riordan emerged as the top choice from a diverse pool of more than 100 highly accomplished leaders in the nationwide search. Among the finalists, she received the unanimous recommendation of the search committee, which was composed of Adelphi trustees, administrators, faculty, students and alumni. The University board of trustees also unanimously approved her appointment. On behalf of Search Committee Co-chair Dr. N. Gerry House, we extend our sincere thanks to the members of the search committee who worked tirelessly on this effort.

Watch select portions of Dr. Riordan’s introduction to the Adelphi
and opening remarks on December 2, 2014.

Dr. Riordan was introduced to Adelphi today at a campus-wide meeting on the Garden City campus where she offered her first remarks as a member of our community. Since 2013, Dr. Riordan has served as provost at the University of Kentucky (UK), which has more than 30,000 students, 19,000 full- and part-time employees and a budget of $3 billion. She is responsible for supporting and advancing UK’s academic programs, teaching and scholarship. Her oversight includes 16 colleges, an extensive library system, undergraduate education, graduate education, enrollment management, information technology, student support services, international programs, institutional research and institutional effectiveness. Prior to joining UK, Dr. Riordan served as dean of the Daniels College of Business at the University of Denver from 2008 to 2013.

An internationally recognized expert in leadership development, diversity and inclusion and team performance, Dr. Riordan consults regularly with organizations and is a frequent speaker on these topics She is often interviewed and has written more than 28 articles for business media such as the Financial Times, Harvard Business Review, Forbes, USA Today, U.S. News & World Report, The New York Times, International Herald Tribune, HuffingtonPost, MSNBC, CNN, CNBC, Wall Street Journal, MarketWatch, CareerBuilder, and Psychology Today. She has also published 29 academic articles, and other authors have cited her research more than 2,900 times.

In the coming months, Dr. Riordan will visit the campus to work with President Scott and the board to ensure a smooth transition and get to know the members of our community. To help us welcome President-elect Riordan, I asked members of the search committee, who came to know her through this process, to share personal observations with the campus. Here is a selection of those comments:

In a pool of very strong candidates, Chris Riordan quickly emerged as the clear choice to be Adelphi’s 10th president, receiving unanimous support from the students, faculty and trustees on the search committee. Dr. Riordan’s impressive record of scholarly achievement, administrative experience and leadership skill make her the ideal person to lead Adelphi University through the next decade and beyond.

Robert Bornstein, Ph.D.
Professor, Gordon F. Derner Institute of Advanced Psychological Studies

We were fortunate to have an enormously strong pool of candidates, and Chris was the complete package. Our global search resulted in uncovering a gem. She is strong academically as well as having been a dean of a business school and a provost of a top-tier research institution. Chris Riordan has the leadership skills to lead the University, and her presidency is a historic moment in Adelphi history as our first woman president.

Noreen Harrington ’81
Adelphi University Trustee

I feel confident that Dr. Riordan will provide resources and opportunities for students to ensure that they have the best chance at succeeding in any endeavor they wish to pursue within and outside of the Adelphi community. I believe that Dr. Riordan will take Adelphi to the next level, while also respecting the history and culture that it has established.

Dilara Islam
Adelphi University undergraduate Class of 2016, mathematics major and Levermore Global Scholar, College of Arts and Sciences

Learn more about the president-elect, including additional observations from members of the search committee and the official press release.

Please join me in welcoming Dr. Riordan to the Adelphi family.

Robert B. Willumstad ’05 (Hon.)
Chairman of the Adelphi University Board of Trustees and Search Committee Co-chair