News Release| American Council on Education; Cal State L.A.

March 13, 2012

Cal State L.A. President James M. Rosser honored with ACE’s 2012 Reginald Wilson Diversity Leadership Award

Los Angeles, CA — For his more than three decades of unwavering commitment to diversity in higher education, California State University, Los Angeles (CSULA) President James M. Rosser has been honored with the 2012 Reginald Wilson Diversity Leadership Award from the American Council on Education (ACE).

The award was presented today at ACE’s 94th Annual Meeting in Los Angeles. It is given every year to an individual who has made outstanding contributions and demonstrated sustained commitment to diversity in higher education. The award is named in honor of Reginald Wilson, senior scholar emeritus at ACE and former director of the organization’s Office of Minority Concerns.

“Receiving this distinguished award from such a prominent and enduring organization as ACE is truly an honor,” said Rosser. “Since its origin, Cal State L.A., and the entire California State University [CSU] system, have made serving all the state’s communities an imperative, particularly those that are underrepresented. To this day, Cal State L.A. provides the nation one of the best templates for diversity in higher education. So this award is shared by many.”

Throughout his 33 years as president of Cal State L.A., Rosser has been a champion for access to quality higher education among underserved communities and has advanced programs that increase diversity in education and within the science, math, engineering, and technology (STEM) communities.

CSULA is among the most diverse campuses in the nation in the ranks of its faculty as well as its student body. Under Rosser’s leadership, CSULA has established an outstanding and prolonged record of sending underrepresented students onto Ph.D. and professional degree programs across the country.

Rosser is a respected leader within the entire 23-campus CSU system, and has led many initiatives that have improved student and faculty success. Some of his diversity-focused program involvement includes being one of the lead presidents for the CSU’s African American Initiative as well as the CSU Presidents’ Council on Underserved Communities. In the mid-1980s, Rosser authored the original plan for today’s highly-successful Chancellor’s Doctoral Incentive Loan Program. The program enables CSU to develop faculty from its own diverse student body by forgiving a portion of doctoral student loans for those who return to accept qualifying instructional positions within the CSU system.

“James Rosser’s record of leadership and service to higher education is driven by the inspiring idea that diversity and excellence are inseparable,” said Diana Córdova, assistant vice president for Leadership Programs at ACE. “It is an honor to present him with this award and have him join the ranks of such distinguished past winners.”


# # # 

Working for California since 1947: The 175-acre hilltop campus of California State University, Los Angeles is at the heart of a major metropolitan city, just five miles from Los Angeles’ civic and cultural center. More than 20,000 students and 220,000 alumni—with a wide variety of interests, ages and backgrounds—reflect the city’s dynamic mix of populations. Six Colleges offer nationally recognized science, arts, business, criminal justice, engineering, nursing, education and humanities programs, among others, led by an award-winning faculty. Cal State L.A. is home to the critically-acclaimed Luckman Jazz Orchestra and to the Honors College for high-achieving students. Programs that provide exciting enrichment opportunities to students and community include an NEH-supported humanities center; a NASA-funded center for space research; and a growing forensic science program, housed in the Hertzberg-Davis Forensic Science Center.