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New employees and notable changes | May 2016

Recent hires, promotions, transfers and notable changes
May 20, 2016

Academic Division

Food Studies program director announced
Polly AdemaPolly Adema has been appointed director of the Master of Arts in Food Studies program at the San Francisco Campus. She assumes her new post on June 16. A culinary anthropologist, Adema joins Pacific from Arts Mid-Hudson, a nonprofit arts organization serving three New York counties, where she directed the highly regarded Folk Arts Program. She received her PhD in American studies from the University of Texas at Austin and her MA from the Folklife Institute at Indiana University, Bloomington. Adema will be responsible for administering the Food Studies program, including marketing and publicity, student recruitment, networking within the food sector, coordinating activities of students and faculty, and planning community-related events. Read more>>

Interim Registrar appointed
Lisa Erck, registrar for McGeorge School of Law, has agreed to serve as interim university registrar effective immediately. Erck joined Pacific in 2013 as the registrar for McGeorge School of Law. She brings her leadership skills and outstanding knowledge of Pacific and its Banner ERP system to advance university-wide issues. Erck will continue to serve as registrar for McGeorge and will work on both campuses through the end of August. She will provide essential leadership as Pacific conducts a summer search and interview process for a full-time university registrar.

Valerie Andeola was promoted to Internal Review Board (IRB) and Institutional Animal Care and Use Committee (IACUC) administrator in Research and Graduate Studies.

Brenda Carrillo was promoted to head of library systems and technical services in the Library.

Mary-Kate Dopkins was promoted to access services specialist II in the Library.

Cindy Lyon

Cindy Lyon '86 has been appointed as the James R. Pride, DDS and Carolyn L. Pride Endowed Chair for Practice Management at University of the Pacific, Arthur A. Dugoni School of Dentistry. The endowed chair honors Lyon's longstanding achievement in the dental field and leadership as chair of the school's Department of Dental Practice and Community Programs. This appointment is supported by a $2.5 million endowment established by the late Jim Pride, his wife Carolyn Pride and other family members.

Maysa Namakian
was promoted to director of continuing dental education in the Department of Dental Practice.

Jenny Wong, Visiting Director of Choral Activities, has been appointed to a two-year post as Assistant Conductor for the Los Angeles Master Chorale beginning this month. Among other responsibilities, Wong will conduct on upcoming LAMC programs, assist with rehearsals, help facilitate LAMC's 16-voice Chamber Singers, collaborate with Artistic Director Grant Gershon on artistic matters, and take a leadership role in LAMC outreach projects, including the High School Choir Festival, one of the region's longest running and most far-reaching music education programs. Read more>>

Business and Finance

Lorinda DeMercurio is the new assistant to the vice president.

Arlyn Olalia is the new clinic cashier in Business Administration at the San Francisco Campus.

Dolores Alaniz is the new administrative assistant III in Capital Planning, Space Management and Support Services Administration.


Hilda Asturias has transferred to the position of administrative assistant in Development at the San Francisco Campus. She has worked in the dental field as a registered dental assistant for over 20 years, mainly as an office manager in private practices. Previously, she was a registration assistant in the Dental Clinic.

Jodie Harmon was promoted to Associate Director of Advancement Services in recognition of her leadership of the advancement services team. Harmon's managerial abilities, positive attitude and knowledge of Banner have enhanced the operations in this critical area.

Student Life

Heather Pearson Villeda was promoted to assistant director of residential life in Housing and Greek Life. Ana Romero was promoted to assistant director of residential life in Housing and Greek Life.

Office of the President

Jaslyn Gilbert is the new photographer in the Office of Marketing and Communications. Previously Gilbert held the position of multimedia producer at Radford University in Radford, Va., where she created multimedia productions and photographs in support of recruitment, retention and marketing. Prior experience includes being the photography services manager at the University of Wisconsin Oshkosh and a photojournalist for the Herald Times Reporter in Manitowoc, Wisconsin.

Pacific Technology

James August is the new chief information security officer. Jessica Chandler was promoted to business support specialist I.

External Relations

Janelle Meyers, project manager, accepted a position as director of marketing and public relations for Lodi Health. Her last day at Pacific was April 26.


Katelyne Herrington is new assistant swim coach in Athletics. The Stockton native comes to Pacific from the University of New Mexico where she was the swimming director of operations. Prior to her time at UNM, the former UNLV all-American was a volunteer assistant coach at her alma mater.

JayDee Luster is a new assistant men's basketball coach in Athletics. He joins the Tigers after spending last year as a player development coach for the Dallas Mavericks where he worked with the players on individual skill development, implementing drills and workouts for each player.

Leonard Perry is the new associate head coach for men's basketball in Athletics. Perry brings with him decades of coaching and recruiting experience as both an assistant coach and head coach. Most recently the associate head coach at Colorado State, Perry spent four seasons with the Rams during which time the team enjoyed unprecedented success.  

James Polster is the new assistant women's volleyball coach in Athletics. Polster joined the Tigers staff for the first season as Pacific's volunteer assistant coach in 2013. He took over as a full-time assistant coach in spring 2016. He came to Pacific as a highly decorated collegiate and international player as both an all-American at Long Beach State and a member of Team USA. He enters his third year with the Tigers working with Pacific's defensive players and primary passers. 

Luke Wicks is a new assistant coach for men's basketball in Athletics. Wicks joins the Tigers after spending the last six years at the University of San Francisco where he worked under Rex Walters. Originally hired by the Dons as the program's video coordinator and strength and conditioning coach, Wicks worked his way into an assistant role after two years while eventually earning the title of associate head coach for the past three seasons.  


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