Contact: Joseph Garcia, (360) – 650-3916; Joseph.Garcia@wwu.edu Photo courtesy of WWU Joseph Garcia
Photo courtesy of WWU
“Dr. Garcia brings a wealth of scholarly and managerial experience to this major new initiative made possible by the generosity of donors who have an expansive vision for the future of this university. I have every confidence that he will continue to be an exemplary leader himself, and to develop the promise inherent in this new Professorship and Institute. I could not be more pleased that he has agreed to move into this new chapter in his career,” Murphy said.
A $1 million gift from Jack and Jo Ann Bowman endowed the Bowman Distinguished Professorship in Leadership that will be dedicated to curricular innovation, teaching, and scholarship that advances the understanding and application of leadership.
The Bowman gift, along with other major contributions from David and Denise Cole and Rick and Sylvia Haggen, also allows for the creation and endowment of the Karen W. Morse Institute for Leadership, named in honor of WWU President Emeritus Karen Morse.
“I look forward to serving the university in this role and contributing to Western’s legacy as a leading public university. Western is fortunate to have supporters who understand that leadership studies are an essential component of a meaningful university experience,” Garcia said.
The new interdisciplinary institute will support and expand Western's goal to develop graduates who are well prepared to exercise responsible leadership in their chosen careers and communities.
“We were just very happy that we were able to pay back a little of what Western had done for us,” said Jack Bowman, a Western alumnus. “When we heard that Karen Morse was involved with the leadership program, we thought what better way to do something for Western and at the same time something that would be identified with Karen.”
“We have no shortage of bright students at Western,” he said. “But this program will help generate a new generation of students who won’t just be ready to follow, they’ll be ready to lead.”
Garcia, who will begin his new duties this fall, is now associate dean of Western’s College of Business and Economics (CBE) and director and founder of the Center for Excellence in Management Education at CBE. He received his master’s degree from Western and a doctorate in organizational and social psychology from the University of Utah. His career focus is on leadership and building healthy communities in organizations, with publications spanning topics of diversity, managerial skills, management education, leadership, group support systems, and change management with information technology. He is the co-author with WWU Education Professor Karen Hoelscher of the book “Managing Diversity Flashpoints in Higher Education,” focusing on diversity-driven problems and topics, and the methodologies used to solve them.
He is a member of the Academy of Management, the Organizational Behavior Teaching Society, the Management Faculty of Color Association, the Academy of Business Educators and the Society for Industrial and Organizational Psychology and currently serves as member of the Editorial Board for the Journal of Management Education, the Academy of Management Learning and Education Journal, and the Journal of Leadership and Organizational Studies.
His honors include receiving the Organizational Behavior Teaching Society's Peter J. Frost Excellence in Mentoring Award, the Western Washington University Diversity Achievement Award, the Western Washington University Foundation Board of Directors Campus Volunteer of the Year, the Organizational Behavior Teaching Society Distinguished Service Award, and the Academy of Management’s Organizational Behavior Division Exceptional Leadership and Service Award, and the Washington Latino Business Association's Leadership Award.