Antioch University’s governing board on Thursday named Dr. William Flores president of its Santa Barbara campus. The institution’s fourth-ever leader, he succeeds Dr. Nancy Leffert, who retires at the end of June after seven years as president.
Flores’ diverse career in education dates back to the early ’90s, when he chaired the Chicano-Latin American studies department at California State University, Fresno, before serving as associate dean of social sciences. He earned a political science degree from UCLA and a doctorate in Social Theory and Public Policy from Stanford University.
Most recently, Flores served six years as president of the University of Houston-Downtown, which under his guidance expanded its online degree program, opened a satellite campus in northwest Houston, and prioritized civic engagement and volunteerism.
“He understands the diversity and uniqueness of Santa Barbara and our campus, and he demonstrated the personal warmth to convince us he was the perfect choice,” said Vicki Riskin, chairperson of the Antioch’s Santa Barbara Board of Trustees.
Citing Antioch’s “vision of ‘offering learners and communities transformative education in a global context that fosters innovation and inspires social action,’” Williams called the philosophy “at the heart of what I believe as an educator.” “I’m looking forward to being part of Antioch and contributing to the University’s continued success,” he said in a prepared statement.