Sall Roush answers questions
San Diego State University interim president Sally Roush will learn her successor Wednesday. Photo by Chris Jennewein

The California State University Board of Trustees is expected Wednesday to name a new president for San Diego State University.

The announcement will be made Wednesday morning during the trustees’ meeting in Long Beach. (The meeting will be livestreamed here.)

Jill Esterbrooks, SDSU spokeswoman, said names of candidates were not made available.

The new president will succeed Elliot Hirshman, who held the position for six years. He left at the end of the last school year to become president of Stevenson College in Maryland.

Longtime SDSU executive Sally Roush came out of retirement to take his place in an interim role, making her the 121-year-old university’s first female president.

San Diego-area CSU trustee Adam Day chaired the six-member search committee, which first convened Sept. 25 and included trustees Silas Abrego, Lillian Kimbell, Hugo Morales, Rebecca Eisen and CSU Chancellor Timothy White.

The new president will come aboard at a critical time for the roughly 35,000-student university, which is bursting at the seams of its nearly 290-acre campus.

A proposal known as SDSU West is being pushed by university supporters, who recently submitted more than 106,000 petition signatures in hopes of getting the concept on the ballot, likely in November.

They’re hoping the recent success of an SDSU fundraising campaign that raised more than $800 million is a sign of momentum in support of the university’s expansion efforts.

Under the proposal, the SDCCU Stadium property would be sold to the university, which would then create a development plan for the land.

Since the university is already built to capacity on its existing campus, backers said the proposal would allow SDSU to grow its academic, research and housing facilities to meet increased student demand.

School officials in the fall outlined their vision for the project, including 1.6 million square feet of classroom and research buildings, a river park and open space, 4,500 housing units, retail shops, a pair of hotels and a multi-use, 35,000-seat stadium for college football and other sports.

SDSU Interim President Roush and JMI Realty CEO John Kratzer said the project would be mostly funded by public-private partnerships, and wouldn’t rely on taxpayer financing. The main exception would be the stadium, which would be funded by bonds to be paid back by future revenues.

The land is three trolley stops from the built-out main campus.

The SDSU West project, however, is competing with a proposal known as SoccerCity, which would turn the stadium property into a soccer-centric development that supporters hope will be home to a new Major League Soccer franchise.

The proposal, which has already qualified for the ballot, would include a hybrid soccer and college football stadium, a park along the San Diego River, 2.4 million square feet of office space, 740,000 square feet for retail space, 4,800 multi-family residential units and 450 hotel rooms.

— City News Service

Show comments