President Lesley M. Hallick Announces Summer 2022 Retirement Plans
Pacific University President Lesley M. Hallick, PhD, has announced her plans to retire in the summer of 2022.
“It has been an incredible privilege to serve as president of Pacific University, and I will sorely miss the dedicated faculty, staff and senior leadership with whom I have worked these past 12 years,” Hallick said. “There is never a perfect time to step away, and there are always new challenges and opportunities one would like to see through to completion. However, as we turn the corner from what we accomplished together during the decade of Vision 2020 and start to move beyond COVID and back into the development of Vision 2030, I believe it is the right time for a leader who will implement that vision to be able to help develop it.”
The 17th president in Pacific’s 172-year history, Hallick has led the institution through a period of unparalleled growth and strength. Her tenure has been marked by impressive fiscal health and stability, investment in facilities and infrastructure, focus on diversity and inclusion, and some of the most successful fundraising years in the institution’s history.
“Our thanks and gratitude to President Hallick for her incredible vision, steady fiscal savvy and continual support for student success,” said Board of Trustees Chair Gerald Yoshida ’73. “The Board of Trustees congratulate Lesley and laud her accomplishments through her 13 years of service to the university. We are especially grateful that Lesley delayed her planned retirement by over a year in order to successfully see Pacific through the COVID crisis. Her dedication and leadership have well positioned Pacific and our students for the future and the university has never been stronger.”
She has overseen the expansion of academic programs in the liberal arts and sciences, education, health professions and optometry, as well as the establishment of the Pacific University College of Business, the university’s first PhD programs, and the return of football.
She also has facilitated the expansion of the university’s research capacity and support structures, culminating in the recognition of Pacific by the National Science Foundation as the top private research university in the Northwest for the past three years.
The Board of Trustees will appoint a search committee for the university’s 18th president, and the process and timeline for the search will be shared when it is available.
“In the meantime, while the board is managing the search for the next president, we will not be standing still,” Hallick said. “There is a great deal to be accomplished this year, so buckle up and stay tuned.”
Hallick began serving as president of Pacific University on Aug. 1, 2009, following a distinguished 32-year career at Oregon Health & Science University. With 20 years of experience as chief academic officer, Hallick has become known for her leadership in the areas of equity and diversity, discovery, and philanthropy. She has nurtured the development of the Student Multicultural Center and the Centers for Peace and Spirituality and Sustainable Society, and added a senior officer of Equity, Diversity and Inclusion to the President’s Cabinet.
Raised in California’s Santa Ana Valley, Hallick attended Orange High School, where she graduated as valedictorian. She earned her bachelor’s degree in biochemistry from Pomona College in Claremont, Calif., graduating cum laude and Phi Beta Kappa. She studied at the University of Wisconsin Madison, where she received her doctoral degree in molecular biology. A Woodrow Wilson Fellow, Hallick has conducted an extensive research program in molecular virology and has authored numerous publications in tumor virology and viral genome structure.
She has a long history of commendation for her work as a teacher and researcher. In addition to her leadership at Pacific University, she has served on many boards and advisory groups, including the Oregon Historical Society, United Way, Northwest Health Foundation, Oregon Healthcare Workforce Institute, OHSU Foundation, Hillsboro Medical Center (formerly Tuality Healthcare), Vision Action Network, and the OHSU Strategic Advisory Committee.
Hallick also manages a 20-acre farm in Scappoose, Ore., with her partner Candace Hardin, raising beef cattle, caring for other animals in their retirement, and welcoming visits from both of their extended families. Hallick’s daughter, Deborah, a computer engineer and educational technologist, lives in Eugene, Ore., with her spouse Tim, and Deborah’s adult children, Charlie and Samantha, who are both in graduate school pursuing careers in the sciences.
Pacific University is a comprehensive university with undergraduate, graduate and professional degree programs in the liberal arts and sciences, business, education, health professions and optometry. It serves more than 3,700 students from campuses in Forest Grove, Hillsboro, Eugene, and Woodburn, Ore. Pacific is consistently ranked among the top universities in the country by organizations such as U.S. News & World Report, which most recently ranked the university as a top school, a best value, and a leader in serving veterans and promoting social mobility for its graduates.
The Pacific University Board of Trustees issued a unanimous resolution commending President Hallick at its fall meeting Sept. 25, 2021.