Saint Martin’s University names new president

Bryan M. Johnston, J.D., to become University’s ninth president

May 7, 2008

Lacey, Washington — The Saint Martin’s University board of trustees announced today that Bryan M. Johnston, J.D., will be the University’s new president.

“The board of trustees is confident in Bryan Johnston’s ability to provide Saint Martin’s with outstanding leadership,” said Ken F. Parsons, Sr., board chair. “With his distinguished, consensus-building management experience and strong record of strategic planning and community relations, he will lead this institution forward.”

“Mr. Johnston understands the mission and constituency of Saint Martin’s University,” Parsons added. “He brings with him a knowledge of and commitment to the Benedictine values that define a Saint Martin’s education.”

Johnston currently serves as the interim director for Oregon’s Children, Adults and Families Division of the Department of Human Services. He will assume his duties as the ninth president of Saint Martin’s University on July 1, 2008.

Johnston said he is honored to have this opportunity to join and lead the University community. “I knew when I first came to campus that Saint Martin’s is a special place,” remarked Johnston. “The beautiful wooded setting is only a prelude to the spirit that seems to energize the institution. The monastery and the University complement each other and brighten each other.”

“I look forward to assuming my role in the community,” Johnston continued. “The students, faculty, staff, monks and supporters have made Saint Martin’s the school it is today, and I get to help all of them make the school what it can be for tomorrow. I also look forward to being part of the greater, state capital community. I have a great interest in how a state accomplishes its role and how it uses its workers to their best advantage. A university can play a vital role in that process.”

Johnston has held a variety of administrative positions in higher education. He served as the interim president of Willamette University, Salem, Oregon, from July 1997 to August 1998. Prior to his interim presidency, he held several leadership posts at Willamette. He was a founding faculty member and director of Willamette College of Law’s Center for Dispute Resolution. He later served as associate dean at the law school. After his interim presidency, he served as professor of conflict management and dean at the Atkinson Graduate School of Management. Johnston’s academic experience also includes terms as adjunct professor at the law schools of the University of New Mexico, University of Bridgeport, University of Oregon and Pepperdine University.

Johnston served as state representative in the Oregon Legislature from 1995 to 1999. Since 2003, he has run his own management consultant practice, offering expertise on strategic planning, ethics, board development and organizational development services.

A native of the south side of Chicago, Johnston earned a bachelor of science degree in education from Northern Illinois University in 1970 and a juris doctorate from Loyola University of Chicago in 1975. He worked for Legal Aid in Chicago and was an assistant public defender before moving to Oregon. Johnston and his wife, Anne, have been married for 29 years and have four children, Drew, 23, Courtney, 22, Zach, 16, and John, 12.

Saint Martin’s University is an independent four-year, Catholic, coeducational university located on a 320-acre wooded campus in Lacey, Washington. Established in 1895 by the Catholic Order of Saint Benedict, the University is one of 18 Benedictine colleges and universities in the United States and Canada, and the only one west of the Rocky Mountains. Saint Martin’s University prepares students for successful lives through its 21 majors and six graduate programs spanning the liberal arts, business, education and engineering. Saint Martin’s welcomes 1,250 students from many ethnic and religious backgrounds to its main campus, and 650 more to its five extension campuses located at Fort Lewis Army Post, McChord Air Force Base, Olympic College, Centralia College and Tacoma Community College.

For additional information:

Jennifer G. Fellinger
Director of Communications
Saint Martin’s University