CIIS Administration

Joseph L. Subbiondo, President

Joseph L. Subbiondo, president of CIIS since June 1999, has an accomplished background in both administration and academics. He brings a 30-year history of achievement in higher education, including appointments on several international academic committees; and he has been active on many accreditation teams for the Western Association of Schools and Colleges.

Subbiondo's publications include extensive writings on the history of linguistics. Among his publications are studies of the history of philosophical language, 17th Century British educational reform, and the relation between language and the evolution of consciousness. Prior to coming to CIIS, he served as dean of the School of Liberal Arts at St. Mary's College of California; vice president for academic affairs at the University of the Pacific; dean of the College of Arts and Sciences at Santa Clara University; and as a professor of English and linguistics at four universities.

Bibliography of President Subbiondo's published works >>

Judie Wexler, Academic Vice President

Dr. Judie Wexler has been at CIIS since 2002. Her focus in higher education is on creating and enhancing academic programs that combine cognitive and personal growth and community service. A professor of sociology, Dr. Wexler has been teaching for more than 25 years and served as chair for both the Department of Sociology and the Division of Business Administration and Social Sciences at Holy Names College.

Between 1992 and 1997, Dr. Wexler held the positions of vice president for academic affairs and dean of faculty at Holy Names College in Oakland, where she focused her energies on creating a faculty development program to incorporate multicultural materials into the curriculum, among other projects. Before coming to CIIS, she was associate executive director at the Western Association of Schools and Colleges.

Chip B. Goldstein, Dean of Academic Planning and Administration

Dr. Goldstein joined CIIS in fall 2006 from Stanford University where he was the chief finance and administrative officer for Undergraduate Advising Programs and the Freshman Dean's Office. Dr. Goldstein also served for 10 years as registrar at Notre Dame de Namur University and as a senior project manager in the higher education division at Oracle Corporation. He has held academic administration posts at the University of Michigan and University of Detroit Mercy. A native of Philadelphia, he completed his undergraduate work at West Chester University, a master's at Michigan State University and a doctorate in Higher Education Administration and Policy at Nova Southeastern University.

Richard Buggs, Dean of Alumni and Director of Travel Programs

Richard Buggs has been CIIS Dean of Alumni since 2006 and is responsible for cultivation of alumni relations with the Institute's 3,400 alums, now living in 29 different countries. He has traveled across the country bringing alums together and creating CIIS Alumni Circles in Seattle, New York, San Diego, Los Angeles, Boston and Hawaii.

Buggs is also a member of the CIIS Advancement Group. He created the CIIS Travel Program in 2004 and annually leads alumni and friends trips to India. In 1996 he earned his PhD in Clinical Psychology from CIIS and has a BA from San Diego State University. He is a licensed psychologist and maintains a private practice in psychotherapy.

Buggs previously served on the board of directors for Haight-Ashbury Psychological Services and on the board of the California Psychology Internship Council. He also served at CIIS as dean of students (1998-2007) and as director of Career and Field Placement (1994-1998).

Visit the Travel Programs page.

Michelle Eng, Dean of the School of Undergraduate Studies

Michelle Eng, MA, has over 14 years of experience in higher education, as an administrator and as faculty. She earned her undergraduate and graduate degrees in English Literature from the University of Hawaii at Manoa. Prior to joining CIIS, Eng served as assistant dean of students at Chaminade University of Honolulu where she developed the curriculum for the First Year Experience course, which focuses on transitioning to college, cultural sensitivity, career planning, and community service. She has also taught writing and literature at TransPacific Hawaii College, Chaminade University, and the University of Hawaii.

Visit the Bachelor's Completion Program page.

Kathy Littles, Director of Transformative Inquiry Department

Kathy Littles, PhD, joined CIIS in 2006 as an Adjunct Professor in the Bachelor of Arts Completion Program. While teaching at CIIS, Dr. Littles held an administrative position in the Cultural Arts and Marketing Division for the City of Oakland. Previous administrative positions include the Cultural Council for Monterey County in Carmel, Calif., and University of California, Santa Barbara. In 2006 she earned her doctorate in cultural studies with a designated emphasis in feminist theory and research from the University of California, Davis. She earned a BA in anthropology and art from St. Mary's College of California in 1994, and her MA in anthropology from San Francisco State in 1998. Research interests include critical race theory, feminist theory, African Art, and the semiotics of museums and ethnic art.

Visit the Transformative Leadership page and the Transformative Studies page.

Dan Gurler, Registrar

Prior to joining CIIS in June of 2007, Dan Gurler held several administrative positions at Golden Gate University, including admissions counselor, records office manager, director of student retention, and associate registrar. He also earned his MBA from Golden Gate University. A Midwest native, Gurler received his bachelor's degree in theatre and English from the University of Iowa, and has stage-managed plays for many small theatre companies in the Bay Area.

Visit the Registrar's Office page.

Dorotea Reyna, Vice President of Development

Since March 2003 Dorotea Reyna has served as Director of Development, and in fall 2014 she was appointed Vice President of Development. Prior to coming to the Institute, she was a fundraiser for Dominican University of California, the University of California at San Francisco, and theHispanic Scholarship Fund. Reyna received a bachelor's degree in English from Stanford University (1980), and a master's degree in English from the University of Texas at Austin (1984).

Read more about ways to Support CIIS.

James David Martin, Director of Communications

Jim Martin comes to CIIS with more than 15 years of experience in communications and marketing in both for-profit and non-profit environments. After graduating from UC Berkeley, he began his career in higher education as publicist for UC Berkeley Extension where he led the grand opening campaign of its Redwood City Center. He then worked for many years in the entertainment industry, serving as personal publicist for film and television actors and directors, and as an art director and production manager for film premieres.

Prior to CIIS, Martin worked as a media advisor and freelance communications consultant. He is on the board of directors for Visual Aid, a San Francisco-based non-profit dedicated to helping artists with life-threatening illness continue their creative work.

S. Michelle Coleman, Director of Human Resources

Michelle Coleman came to CIIS from the American Automobile Association (AAA) of Northern California, Nevada, and Utah, where she served for two years as the human resources strategic business partner for the Division of the Chief Financial Officer and two years as program manager in Corporate Affairs.

Coleman has also worked as the director of Diversity Training and Development at Charles Schwab & Company and as assistant Vice president for human resources at Bank of America. She has been active in the areas of community service and spirituality for many years, and was initially attracted to CIIS by the appeal of its mission and Seven Ideals. Michelle is a graduate of the University of San Francisco with a BS in Organizational Behavior.

Karim Baer, Director of Public Programs & Performances

Karim Baer became the Director of Public Programs in 2004. He has worked in a variety of fields including human resources, social work, and business management. Prior to coming to CIIS, Baer was the Director of 7th Heaven Body Awareness, a center in Berkeley specializing in yoga and other contemplative arts. Baer is also an alum of Naropa University. He envisions programs integrating body, heart, and mind in relation to service in the world.

Visit the Visit the Public Programs page.

Becky McGovern, Director of MCP Field Placement and CIIS Clinic Sites

Becky McGovern has also served as core faculty in Somatic Psychology and clinic director at Center for Somatic Psychotherapy at CIIS, where she developed several partnership programs between community agencies and CIIS counseling students in field placement. She is a licensed marriage and family therapist, supervises students, and maintains a private practice in psychotherapy. Prior to joining CIIS, she worked for 15 years in a variety of publishing positions, including 7 years as a senior acquisitions editor for psychology and health administration books. She earned BA and MA degrees from an interdisciplinary program in Work/Culture/Society from the University of Illinois, Springfield, is ABD in sociology from the University of Oregon, and earned a second MA in Counseling Psychology from CIIS.

Noah Lowenstein, Library Director

Noah Lowenstein arrived at CIIS with more than 15 years experience working in Libraries. Beginning his library work at the main branch of a large public library system in Utah, Lowenstein then focused on serving communities of learners and teacher/researchers in academic library environments, working as a librarian and/or library director at The University of Texas at Austin, Dartmouth College, and Saybrook University.

Lowenstein earned his BA from Rutgers University, where he studied philosophy, psychology, and sociology, and completed a Henry Rutgers Scholars project by writing a philosophically informed Science Fiction novella. In 1999 he earned his MLIS from The University of Texas at Austin.

Visit the Laurance S. Rockefeller Library web page.

I Chen, Director of Financial Aid

I Chen came to CIIS with more than 13 years of experience in higher education, specializing in enrollment management, student finance, and student retention. She has developed and implemented many innovative and effective financial aid programs in both public and private colleges. Prior to entering the field of higher education, I Chen held various administrative positions in hi-tech industry for more than 10 years. She earned her undergraduate and graduate degrees in Spanish from the Tamkang University in Taiwan and the University of New Mexico (UNM) in Albuquerque, New Mexico. She was the first Chinese student at UNM to graduate with a master degree in Spanish.