Photo courtesy of University of California, Riverside.

Cal State Long Beach has made history with the announcement of its new president, Dr. Jane Conoley: she is the university’s first woman to oversee one of the west coast’s largest and most diverse campuses. She was chosen by the CSU Board of Trustees at their meeting earlier today.

Since the departure of F. King Alexander last year and under the interim presidentship of Donald Para, the educational community—locally, statewide, and nationally—has pondered who will oversee the Southern California academic powerhouse, which saw a record influx of 52,281 freshman applicants.

“Cal State Long Beach is renowned for its quality, diversity and global mission and it is an honor to be selected as the university’s next president,” said Conoley in a statement. “The excellence of its academic offerings, its storied athletic heritage and its unique location has made it one of the CSU’s most popular campuses for prospective students. This is a vibrant university that plays a key role in southern California, and I embrace the opportunity to work with the outstanding students, faculty, staff and Long Beach community to reach even greater heights.”

Conoley recently served as interim chancellor at UC Riverside, a post previously under the helm of current CSU Chancellor Tim White and held by Conoley from December of 2012 to August of 2013. Following, she returned to being the Dean of the Gevirtz Graduate School of Education at UC Santa Barbara, a post she began in 2006. In addition to her oversight as dean, she is also a professor of counseling, clinical and school psychology. She additionally served a dean position at Texas A&M University from 1996 to 2005, an associate dean position for research at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln’s Teachers College, and has taught at Texas Woman’s University and Syracuse University.

Conoley earned a BA degree in psychology from the College of New Rochelle and a PhD in school psychology from the University of Texas at Austin.

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Editor’s note: This article originally stated that Conoley was currently serving as interim chancellor at UC Riverside; she left that post in August of 2013 to return to UC Santa Barbara.