UAA announces new vice chancellors for student affairs and administrative services

by Green & Gold News  |   

Familiar faces with years of experience at UAA will fill two key leadership positions as Chancellor Sean Parnell announces the newest additions to his cabinet following comprehensive search processes to fill the vice chancellor for student affairs and vice chancellor for administrative services positions.

Deanne Woodard
Deanne Woodard

Vice Chancellor for Student Affairs
After a competitive search process that yielded a number of qualified candidates, Deanne Woodard has been named UAA’s next vice chancellor for student affairs. Woodard has served as associate vice provost for targeted programs and populations at UAA since May 2021, overseeing a number of student success initiatives, such as the Learning Commons, Summer Bridge transition programs and UAA’s three TRIO programs: Student Support Services, Upward Bound and Educational Talent Search. Before stepping into the associate vice provost role, Woodard served as associate dean of university studies for UAA’s Community & Technical College.

Having served in a number of positions related to student affairs and student success before coming to UAA, Woodard brings more than 15 years of higher education experience to the vice chancellor role. At Kansas State University, she served as assistant dean of student life and director of non-traditional and veteran student services. She also directed early college and community outreach programs at Mesa Community College. Woodard has experience in roles related to inclusiveness, multicultural services, student recruitment, student success and more. Before making the jump to higher education, Woodard was a high school English teacher. In addition to her breadth of higher education experience, Woodard’s knowledge and experience with the full student experience, from high school to early college to university and beyond, stood out during the search process.

Woodard holds a bachelor’s degree from Dillard University and a master’s degree from Saint Louis University, both in English language and literature. She will begin her duties as vice chancellor June 19.

Ryan Buchholdt
Ryan Buchholdt

Vice Chancellor for Administrative Services
Following another competitive national search, Ryan Buchholdt has been appointed vice chancellor for administrative services. Buchholdt has served in a number of leadership positions within UAA Administrative Services for nearly a decade. He was appointed interim budget director in April 2020 and subsequently permanent budget director in December 2021. Prior to leading the UAA budget office, Buchholdt served as deputy director for Facilities and Campus Services, interim director of Environmental Health and Safety/Risk Management, sustainability and business manager for Facilities and Campus Services and business manager for Facilities and Campus Services.

Throughout his career at UAA, Buchholdt has been involved in leadership roles and decision-making units that helped lead the university through unprecedented situations. Perhaps most consequential has been his role on the Incident Management Team, which he has held since 2017. In this role, he stepped in as Incident Commander during the 2018 magnitude 7.1 Anchorage Cook Inlet Earthquake and has been a key leader throughout the COVID-19 pandemic. He has also held positions on the Staff Council and a number of committees, such as the Campus Planning Advisory Board, Facilities Space Planning Committee, Accreditation Advisory Committee, Master Plan Steering Committee and most recently, the Onboarding Steering Committee. Through these and other affiliations, he consistently advocates for student-centered process improvements that promote student success and the university’s overall mission.

Buchholdt is a UAA alumnus and served as USUAA Student Body President during his time as a student. He holds a Bachelor of Business Administration in management and a Master of Business Administration in leadership and business intelligence and analytics. His graduate research focused on university budget models and financial health; themes that have been relevant during his career at UAA.

Buchholdt will officially begin as vice chancellor June 6.

Please join the UAA community in congratulating Woodard and Buchholdt on their new positions and thanking those who served on search committees for both of these important positions as well as the hundreds of students, staff, faculty, alumni and community members who weighed in throughout the process. Special thanks to Chief Diversity Officer Jenn Booz for chairing the Administrative Services search and Provost Denise Runge and Dean of Students Ben Morton for co-chairing the Student Affairs search.

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