Skip to main content Skip to navigation
Washington State University
Washington State University Office of the Provost

Hello from Chris Riley-Tillman

Dear Faculty Colleagues,

I hope this email finds you well as the semester winds down.  Before the term ends, I wanted to briefly reiterate my excitement about joining WSU as your next provost and executive vice president.  My family and I look forward to arriving in Pullman in late June and joining the WSU community on July 1.

Leaving my interview a few weeks ago, I knew that I wanted to be at Washington State and have the opportunity to work with the deeply talented and invested faculty, staff, and students!  I’m excited to start spending time with the university community, and most importantly, listen to your expertise, experiences, and feedback.  You can anticipate that I will be on a full-fledged listening tour over the fall semester.  I am eager to engage with the university community to ensure I am building meaningful partnerships.

For background information, I am concluding my tenure as dean of the College of Education & Human Development at the University of Missouri and previously served as associate provost for faculty affairs and institutional effectiveness.  In my view, the American public education system, extending from early childhood through higher education, is the single most crucial part of our society.  The public education system, when at its best, allows for intellectual pursuits, social mobility, and the exploration of personal growth across all of our society.  Obviously, while that system has incredible potential, it also demonstrates the stark inequity in the United States.  From the beginning of my career, my interest has been focused on helping children and families have equitable access to quality education.  These interests have evolved and continue to persist, ever shaped by the lessons learned and the persons that have taught them to me.

Across its long history, Washington State University has been established as a preeminent institution built upon a sturdy foundation of serving the state and its citizens while advancing the knowledge and tools to help society reach its best potential.  I look forward to working with the faculty, staff, President Schulz, and administration to continue this trajectory.

This fall, I will join the deans and host college-wide meetings.  These meetings will give me unique opportunities to spend time with each of you and start developing a foundation of knowledge about each college.  I am very much looking forward to these important meetings.  The Provost’s Office will finalize a schedule and release email invitations by the end of August.

I hope you have an excellent end to the spring semester and a rejuvenating summer.  I look forward to our future interactions.  In the meantime, I welcome your questions, suggestions, and feedback.  You are welcome to contact me at

Go Cougs!

Chris Riley-Tillman
Incoming Provost and Executive Vice President