Mary Platt
Director of Communications and Media Relations
Chapman University

Chancellor Daniele Struppa, Ph.D.

Daniele Struppa, Ph.D.

ORANGE, Calif. –
At a meeting earlier today, the Chapman University Board of Trustees officially named Chapman’s chancellor, Daniele Struppa, Ph.D., as “presidential designate” and successor to President Jim Doti, Ph.D., when Doti eventually retires.  The Chapman Faculty Senate last Friday also voted to approve Struppa as the eventual successor to the university presidency.

Doti, 67 – a respected economist whose 23 years at the helm of Chapman place him among the longest-serving university presidents in the nation, and whose leadership has guided Chapman’s steady upward trajectory from a small, local liberal-arts college to a nationally prominent university – has stated that he has no immediate plans to retire from the presidential post he has held since 1991.  However, in a message sent out to all Chapman students, faculty and staff members immediately following the board’s vote today, he clarified why he has strongly advocated this succession plan and why he sought its approval by the university community, the faculty and the trustees.

Chapman University President Jim Doti

Jim Doti, Ph.D.

“While this action will not have any immediate impact, it paves the way for me to work more closely with Daniele on presidential matters,” Doti said in the message.  “Many of the decisions I face have long-term consequences for our university.  As our presidential designate, Daniele will need to be as excited and enthusiastic as I about actions we take that will have impacts far into the future.  Such support will help ensure that our long-run strategies and initiatives are based on a common vision, and have the continuity of executive leadership to carry out that vision.”

Struppa, 58, joined Chapman University as chancellor in 2006.  (At Chapman, the chancellor is second-in-command at the university and is in charge of the faculty and academic initiatives, a post sometimes known as “provost” at other schools.)  Prior to his arrival at Chapman, Struppa served at George Mason University, first as director of the Center for the Applications of Mathematics, then as chair of the Department of Mathematical Sciences and as associate dean for graduate studies.  In 1997, he was selected dean of the College of Arts and Sciences at George Mason, a position he held until he joined Chapman University.

A distinguished mathematician, the Italian-born Struppa earned his laurea in mathematics from the University of Milan, Italy, and his doctorate in mathematics from the University of Maryland, College Park. He has authored more than 150 refereed publications, has edited several volumes, and is the author or co-author of seven books, including the upcoming
The Mathematics of Superoscillations
with Chapman physicists Yakir Aharonov, Ph.D. and Jeff Tollaksen, Ph.D. While serving as chancellor, Dr. Struppa has continued his scholarly research, focusing on Fourier analysis and its applications to a variety of problems, including the algebraic analysis of systems of differential equations, signal processing and pattern recognition.  Some of his recent work applies these ideas and methods to real-world problems, ranging from de-noising to bio-contaminant protection to the proteomics of cancerous cells.

Doti expressed his gratitude to the university community, the faculty and the trustees for their consideration and approval of the succession plan: “I believe strongly that it is a critically important presidential responsibility to be actively engaged in succession planning.  But that engagement must involve faculty and community input.  So I am grateful to the faculty for its consideration of my recommendation, and to the many members of the Chapman community who personally expressed their views to Chairman Doy Henley and other members of our Board of Trustees.

“I also wish to express my appreciation to the board for its decision to approve a presidential succession plan that it believes is right for Chapman, even though that plan is outside the usual norm.  The board’s action helps explain, I believe, why Chapman is increasingly regarded as a trendsetter in higher education.  We are fortunate, indeed, to have the spirited leadership of a dynamic Board of Trustees that has had such a transformative impact on our university.”


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