Adams State announces presidential candidate finalists

ALAMOSA — The Adams State University presidential search committee selected four finalists to move forward. The names of the finalists were presented to the ASU Board of Trustees on Friday morning.

Mary Bonderoff, Roxanne Gonzalez-Walker, Tim Pinnow, and David Tandberg will interview on campus for the full-time position the week of April 17 with sessions scheduled for campus stakeholders, San Luis Valley community leaders, and the Board of Trustees. The university will release dates and times as they become available.

The pending appointment follows the June 2022 departure of Cheryl Lovell, when the Board of Trustees voted unanimously not to renew her contract.

“The overall search reflects the Board’s commitment to identifying high-quality candidates from a nationwide pool,” noted Jonathan Marquez, co-chair of the search committee and member of the Board of Trustees. “The qualifications of these four finalists include experience in private business, higher education, and government; very well-rounded facets that could benefit Adams State.”

Bonderoff is the officer-in-charge (interim president) at State University of New York (SUNY) Delhi, holding that post since May 2022. Bonderoff previously served a six-month stint as special advisor to the SUNY Chancellor. Bonderoff began her career at SUNY Oneonta in 1989 serving in multiple roles including director of the Center for Multicultural Experiences, director for Student Diversity, as well as director of Diversity Education and Community Outreach. Her career pivoted to SUNY Morrisville as chief diversity officer and Title IX coordinator and has also been vice president for Student Affairs and chief diversity officer.

Bonderoff earned a doctorate from Northeastern University; two master’s and a bachelor’s in education, all from SUNY Oneonta.

Gonzalez-Walker is the provost and vice president of Academic Affairs at New Mexico Highlands University, a position she has held since 2017. Gonzalez-Walker also held leadership roles at Clarion (PA) University, Regis University, and Park (MO) University.

Gonzalez-Walker holds a doctorate in higher education administration from the University of Massachusetts-Boston; a master’s in counseling from Creighton University; and a bachelor’s in psychology (Cum Laude) from the University of Maryland Global Campus.

Pinnow has been president of Finlandia University in Michigan since May 2022. Previously, Pinnow held posts over 13 years at Colorado Mesa University as senior vice president for Strategic Initiatives; assistant vice president of Academic Affairs; and head for the Department of Theatre Arts. Pinnow was also a tenured professor and head of acting in the Department of Theatre Arts at New Mexico State University.

Pinnow holds a bachelor’s in musical theatre-psychology from Luther College while completing a master’s in fine arts with honors from the University of Florida in theatre performance.

Tandberg has been the interim president of Adams State since July 2022. Tandberg served as a senior vice president of Policy Research and Strategic Initiatives at State Higher Education Executive Officers Association (SHEEO) since 2016. Prior to joining SHEEO, Tandberg was a tenured professor of higher education and co-founded the Center for Postsecondary Success at Florida State University. Before joining Florida State, Tandberg was special assistant to the secretary of education in the Pennsylvania Department of Education.

Tandberg earned a bachelor's in history-social studies education from Adams State in 2002 and was elected president for the Associated Students and Faculty while a student. He earned a master’s in political science and a doctorate in higher education from Penn State University.