Retreat Faculty

Katya Armistead
Assistant Vice Chancellor and Dean of Student Life UC Santa Barbara

Katya Armistead is the Dean of Student Life and Activities at UCSB. Her responsibilities include advising students regarding their co-curricular actives, enforcing campus policy, and membership of the executive committee within the Division of Student Affairs. She works closely with Miles Ashlock, the Assistant Dean of Student Life, facilitating The Leadership Challenge® Workshop for students, staff, and local non-profit professionals. Katya studied and used the Leadership Challenge® model for her dissertation, titled How African American Students Define Leadership, to achieve her Ed.D from the Givertz Graduate School of Education from UCSB.

Miles Ashlock
Assistant Dean and Director of Student Life
UC Santa Barbara

Miles Ashlock manages the complete operation of the office and its services, which pertain to campus organizations, fraternities and sororities, student leadership development, and related initiatives. Since 2007, Miles has been a trained facilitator for The Leadership Challenge® Workshop, which illuminates the ‘Five Practices of Exemplary Leadership’, a research-based model of transformational leadership developed by Professors James Kouzes and Barry Posner at Santa Clara University. In addition to working with students, Miles frequently consults with University staff, departments, and local non-profit and govern professionals as they aspire to hone their leadership philosophies and practices. A Gaucho through and through, Miles completed his bachelor’s (psychology) and master’s (education) at UCSB and is currently a doctoral student at the Gevirtz Graduate School of Education. The topic of his dissertation research is leadership development in international student populations studying in the United States.

L. Michelle Bennett
Director, Center for Research Strategy, National Cancer Institute
National Institutes of Health (NIH)

Michelle Bennett is the Director of the Center for Research Strategy of the National Cancer Institute, National Institutes of Health. Prior to taking on this role, she served as the deputy scientific director of the Division of Intramural Research at the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute and before that was deputy director at NCI’s Center for Cancer Research. Bennett has extensive practical experience in promoting collaboration and team-based approaches by bringing together research scientists with diverse backgrounds and expertise to solve complex scientific problems. She is a facilitator sought by individuals, teams, and institutions to help them devise strategies to promote collaboration and team-based approaches to scientific research. She has published works highlighting the fundamental characteristics that contribute to successful scientific team functioning, including a workbook: Collaboration and Team Science: A Field Guide. Bennett has supported efforts to increase diversity in the biomedical workforce, played a leadership role in launching and building the NIH Stadtman Tenure Track Investigator program, and developed a trans-NIH web presence for the NIH Intramural program. She is the recipient of the NIH and Institute Director’s Awards, the NCI Women’s Scientist Advisors Achievement Award, and the NCI Exceptional Mentor Award. Bennett earned her Ph.D. in oncology from the University of Wisconsin–Madison and was a postdoctoral fellow at the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences where she performed some of the earliest work on BRCA1 and BRCA2. She has a B.A. in Biology and French from Kalamazoo College.

Kimberly Budil
Vice President, UC National Laboratories
University of California Office of the President

Kim Budil is the Vice President for National Laboratories at the UC Office of the President. She is responsible for the University’s management oversight of Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (LBNL), Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (LLNL) and Los Alamos National Laboratory (LANL). Kim serves as an Executive Committee Governor on the Boards of Governors of the Lawrence Livermore National Security, LLC and the Los Alamos National Security, LLC, the managing contractors for LLNL and LANL. Kim was formerly the N Program Manager in the Global Security Principal Directorate at LLNL. She was responsible for the nuclear counterterrorism program including device assessment, pre- and post-detonation nuclear forensics, nuclear incident response and reachback, and nuclear detection and countermeasures research. Kim also served as the Deputy Program Director for Nuclear Counterterrorism within the Office of Strategic Outcomes. Kim joined LLNL in 1987 as a graduate student in the Department of Applied Science at UC Davis and has held a variety of positions across the Laboratory. She served twice as a detailee in Washington, DC, spending two years at NNSA in the Office of Defense Science and two years as a Senior Adviser to the Under Secretary for Science at the Department of Energy. Kim has been a vocal advocate for women in science, serving on the American Physical Society’s Committee on the Status of Women in Physics and has participated in or led a number of site visits to assess the climate for women in physics at national labs and academic institutions. She has a B.S. in Physics from the University of Illinois at Chicago and a M.S. and Ph.D. in Applied Science/Engineering from the University of California, Davis.

Susan Carlson
Vice Provost for Academic Personnel and Programs
University of California, Office of the President

Susan Carlson has served as Vice Provost for Academic Personnel and Programs (APP) at the Office of the President since 2010.  She has responsibility for systemwide policy and practice in faculty recruitment, retention, diversity, and compensation; she also has responsibility for eight hallmark systemwide UC programs, including the University of California Press, The California Digital Library, the UC Education Abroad Program, the UC Washington Center (UCDC), the UC Center in Sacramento, the President’s Postdoctoral Fellowship Program, UC Scout, and UCTV. She works closely with the Executive Directors and Directors of these programs and collaborates with UC campus colleagues and with faculty senate leadership. She is a Professor of English at UC Davis.

John Crockett
Director, Research Project Development
San Diego State University

John Crockett is the Director of Research Project Development at San Diego State University.  He has served over the past 10 years as Principle Investigator and adviser to federal agencies like: SBA, DOD, DOE, DOL, Commerce and others helping to shape and implement national policy for innovation-based economic growth.  While supporting the growth of SDSU’s research portfolio, he also engages in active research, most recently investigating strategies for improving the participation of women and under-represented minorities in STEM faculty careers and innovation-based businesses.

Oscar Dubón Jr.
Vice Chancellor of Equity & Inclusion, Professor of Materials Science and Engineering
UC Berkeley

Oscar Dubón is the Vice Chancellor of Equity & Inclusion at UC Berkeley. He leads campus-wide efforts to broaden the participation of all members of the campus community, particularly those who have been historically underrepresented and/or unwelcomed, in the pursuit of the university’s mission of access and excellence. Before his current appointment, Dubón served as the Associate Dean for Student Affairs and Associate Dean for Equity & Inclusion in the College of Engineering, during which time he received the 2016 Chancellor’s Award for Advancing Institutional Excellence and Equity. Dubón is a professor in the Department of Materials Science and Engineering and Faculty Scientist at the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory. He received a B.S. from UCLA in 1989 and an M.S. and Ph.D. from Berkeley in 1992 and 1996. After postdoctoral positions at Berkeley and Harvard University, he joined the Berkeley faculty in 2000. His research focuses on understanding the role of crystalline imperfections on the electronic behavior of materials for applications in semiconductor technologies. Dubón is the recipient of the 2000 Robert Lansing Hardy Award from the Minerals, Metals and Materials Society, a 2004 CAREER Award from the National Science Foundation, and the 2004 Presidential Early Career Award for Scientists and Engineers (PECASE).

Valerie Leppert
Professor of Engineering
UC Merced

Valerie Leppert is an Associate Professor of Materials Science and Engineering, and Founding Faculty, at UC Merced.  She has Bachelors degrees in Biology, Chemistry and Physics; in addition to a PhD in MSE. Her research interests are in the synthesis and characterization of technological and environmental nano/microphases, with an emphasis on transmission electron microscopy and electron energy-loss spectroscopy; and the structure-property-performance-biological response relationships of nano/microphases. Her pedagogical interests are in the integration of research and education, problem-based learning and team learning/science. She founded the Engineering Service Learning program, Imaging and Microscopy Facility, and Center Of Integrated Nanomechanical Systems REU at UC Merced.  In addition, she served as Chair of the Graduate Council for 3 years at UC Merced, for which she received the Spiess Award for Distinguished Senate Service, and as Chair of the UC Systemwide Coordinating Committee for Graduate Affairs.  She was an Advance Fellow Awardee, and Co-Principal Investigator for UC Merced’s first Advance/IT Catalyst award in 2010, and has been an invited participant in several National Academies workshops aimed at bridging disciplines for both research and pedagogy.

Kyle Lewis
Chair and Professor, Technology Management Program
UC Santa Barbara

Kyle Lewis is a Professor of Technology Management at UC Santa Barbara. Prior to joining UC Santa Barbara, Lewis was an Associate Professor of Management and Faculty Director of the Master of Science in Technology Commercialization (MSTC) in the McCombs School of Business, at the University of Texas at Austin. Her research examines how organizations leverage individual and collective knowledge. She examines the performance of teams, especially those teams engaged in knowledge work such as professional services, new product development, and project-based tasks. She has published articles in Management Science, Academy of Management Review, Academy of Management Journal, Organization Science, Journal of Management, Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes, and Group Dynamics.

Rebecca Lewison
Professor of Biology
San Diego State University

Rebecca Lewison is a conservation ecologist and she serves as Director for the Institute for Ecological Management and Monitoring, a multi-disciplinary research institute at SDSU. She received a Bachelor’s degree from Vassar College and went on to complete a doctorate in Ecology at the University of California, Davis. Using innovative field, quantitative and lab-based approaches, her research focuses on vulnerable wildlife populations that live in both terrestrial and aquatic environments and face pressing conservation issues, e.g. fragmentation, habitat loss, harvest and incidental mortality, disease and other disturbances. Over the past decade, she has been spearheading integrative research in conservation ecology, policy and resource use, with expertise and experience across a wide taxonomic range of organisms. She has served as leader of several research initiatives designed to develop new tools and methodological approaches to understand the magnitude and extent, of population-level and landscape level effects of human-mediated activities.

Beth Mitchneck
Vice Provost for Faculty Success
University of Massachusetts Lowell

Beth Mitchneck oversees the development of faculty success in scholarship and instructional activities at UMass Lowell.  Prior to serving as vice provost, Mitchneck held numerous administrative positions at the University of Arizona including associate dean for academic affairs of the College of Social and Behavioral Sciences, and interim vice provost for academic affairs. She also was the lead program officer for the National Science Foundation’s ADVANCE program to promote gender equity in academic STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics).  Mitchneck has a dual research focus on migration and displaced populations with an emphasis on countries of former Georgia and Ukraine and on gender equity in STEM. She has served on national boards for the Social Science Research Council, the Kennan Institute and editorial boards for the Annals of the Association of American Geographers and Soviet Geography.  Mitchneck received her A.B. from Bryn Mawr College in Russian Area Studies and her PhD. in Geography from Columbia University. She also holds a certificate in Soviet Studies from the Harriman Institute at Columbia University.

Randy Phelps
Staff Associate, Office of Integrative Activities (OIA)
National Science Foundation (NSF)

Randy Phelps is a Staff Associate in the Office of Integrative Activities (OIA) at the National Science Foundation. His major responsibilities include co-coordination of the Foundation-wide Major Research Instrumentation (MRI) program and the Science and the Science and Technology Center (STC) programs. He recently co-chaired the Integrated NSF Support Promoting Interdisciplinary Research and Education (INSPIRE) Working Group and remains involved with that initiative. He was previously the Program Director for Galactic Astronomy and for Education and Special Programs in the Division of Astronomical Sciences while on leave from the California State University, Sacramento where he served as a Full Professor in the Department of Physics and Astronomy. He also held an Adjunct Associate Professor position at the University of California, Davis. Dr. Phelps has also held a National Research Council Associateship at Phillips Laboratory, a postdoctoral position at the Observatories of the Carnegie Institution of Washington, and a Visiting Assistant Professor position at Oberlin College. Dr. Phelps is an internationally recognized expert on star cluster research, and has authored or co-authored over 60 papers, including more than 50 in refereed journals.

Amanda Quintero
Executive Director of Student Academic Success & Equity
California State University, Channel Islands

Amanda Quintero directs multiple academic success programs and grants at Cal State Channel Islands. She has also served as Interim Associate Vice President for Research & Sponsored Programs, Interim Director of the Office of Service Learning, Title V Project Director, and Director for Research & Sponsored Programs.  Prior to joining CI, Quintero was the Coordinator of AmeriCorps Programs for the CSU Chancellor’s Office of Community Service Learning and previously in the California Capital Fellows Program serving as an Executive Fellow under the former Gray Davis Administration. In 2015, she was elected President of the national Alliance of Hispanic Serving Educators (AHSIE). Quintero has a Ph.D. in Education from Claremont Graduate University, a master’s degree in Public Policy and Administration from CSU Long Beach, and a bachelor’s degree in Global Studies from CSU Monterey Bay.

Ganesh Raman
Assistant Vice Chancellor for Research
CSU Office of the Chancellor

Ganesh Raman has over 25 years of experience working with industry, academia and the U.S. government. Prior to joining Cal State University, he was vice-provost for research at the Illinois Institute of Technology and a professor of mechanical, materials and aerospace engineering. He has worked at a NASA center for 14 years and has had a 15-year consulting arrangement with both small and large businesses. His research in the areas of acoustics and flow control is widely recognized. He is a Fellow of the American Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME) and the Royal Aeronautical Society (UK) and an Associate Fellow of the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics (AIAA). Raman was awarded the ASME Lewis F. Moody best paper award in 2002. In addition he was cited in 2001 Boeing inventions awards and received a U.S. Patent and a NASA certificate of recognition for a creative innovation.

Sue Rosser
Special Advisor for Research Development and External Partnerships
CSU Office of the Chancellor

Sue Rosser received her PhD in Zoology from the University of Wisconsin-Madison in 1973. She served as Provost of San Francisco State University from 2009-2016. She is Professor Emerita of the School of Public Policy at Georgia Tech. Rosser served as Dean of the Ivan Allen College, Georgia Tech from July 1999 – June 2009 and also held the Ivan Allen Dean’s Chair of Liberal Arts and Technology.  She was a Professor of History, Technology, and Society.  From 1995-1999, she was Director for the Center for Women’s Studies and Gender Research and Professor of Anthropology at the University of Florida-Gainesville. In 1995, she was Senior Program Officer for Women’s Programs at the National Science Foundation. From 1986 to 1995 she served as Director of Women’s Studies at the University of South Carolina, where she also was a Professor of Family and Preventive Medicine in the Medical School. She has edited collections and written approximately 120 journal articles on the theoretical and applied problems of women, science, and technology and women’s health. She is author of twelve books

Renee Rottner
Assistant Professor, Technology Management Program
UC Santa Barbara

Renee Rottner’s research and teaching focuses on innovation, particularly how innovators can improve the development of new ideas and new firms.  She has examined the dynamics of innovation in a range of settings, including Caltech spinouts, NASA projects, semiconductor startups, and Federal nanotechnology initiatives. She is currently studying these dynamics in non-US contexts, including entrepreneurship in Japan and China, as well as micro-financed businesses in India. Professor Rottner has received research funding from NASA and best paper awards from the Strategic Management Society, the Academy of Management, the Institute for Operations Research and the Management Sciences (INFORMS), and the Society for the Advancement of Management Studies. She has written a book on the history of NASA’s Spitzer Space Telescope and has published articles in the Academy of Management Journal, Entrepreneurship Theory & Practice, and Organizational Dynamics. Currently, she serves on the editorial board of the Strategic Management Journal.

Dan Stokols
Chancellor’s Professor Emeritus of Social Ecology
UC Irvine

Dan Stokols’ research focuses on the study of people’s transactions with their social and physical environments—especially how they influence personal and public health. His research and teaching span the fields of social ecology, environmental psychology, urban planning, epidemiology, and public health. He served as Director of the Social Ecology Program from 1988-92 and as Founding Dean of the School of Social Ecology at UCI from 1992-98. Honors include the Career Award from the Environmental Design Research Association, UCI’s Lauds & Laurels Faculty Achievement Award, and the Newman-Proshansky Career Award from the American Psychological Association. He served as scientific consultant to the National Cancer Institute and as a member of NCI’s SciTS team from 2005-2011. He is currently a team science consultant for the National Academies Keck Futures Initiative (NAKFI) and co-author of the National Academy of Sciences’ report (2015) on Enhancing the Effectiveness of Team Science.

Barbara Endemaño Walker
Director of Research Development for the Social Sciences & Special Assistant to the Executive Vice Chancellor for Diversity Initiatives
UC Santa Barbara

Barbara Endemaño Walker is responsible for catalyzing research innovation and excellence at UCSB ranging from mentoring junior faculty, forming and facilitating interdisciplinary research teams, and teaching workshops and seminars for faculty on various aspects of research and proposal writing.  She also develops and implements evidence-based programs to enhance and promote diversity and inclusion among faculty and students.  She has a Ph.D. and M.A. in Geography from UC Berkeley and a B.A. in Anthropology and African Studies from UCLA.  She currently serves as the Lead PI on an NSF ADVANCE project that focuses on diversity and science teams, as well as PI on a Department of Education Tile V grant to support undergraduate student success at UCSB.  Her research on the political ecology of marine resources within processes of economic development, and broadening participation in higher education, has been funded by grants from NSF, NOAA, Department of Education, the MacArthur Foundation, the Elsevier Foundation, and the Social Science Research Council, among others.