The California State University Board of Trustees announced the appointment of Cynthia Teniente-Matson as president of San José State University.
She currently is president of Texas A&M University-San Antonio.
“San José State is a nexus of history, innovation, the sciences, the arts and so much more,” Teniente-Matson said in a statement. “As the founding institution of the California State University system, the university boasts an unparalleled history of service to the region and state. It also serves as an exemplar for research and discovery with graduates impacting industries and communities throughout Silicon Valley.”
“I am grateful for this opportunity to work alongside all of the talented and dedicated faculty, staff, administrators and friends of the university to accomplish our collective goal of providing opportunities for students to benefit from the transformative power of an SJSU education," she said.
Her appointment as president of SJSU marks a return to the CSU for Teniente-Matson, who previously served as vice president for administration and chief financial officer for California State University, Fresno from 2004 to 2015.
Teniente-Matson will assume the university presidency on Jan. 16.
“Dr. Teniente-Matson has been a forward-thinking leader who has excelled at identifying and implementing new and innovative ways to improve student achievement," said CSU Trustee Christopher Steinhauser, chair of the SJSU search committee. “Her experience, skill set and dedication to student success make her the ideal candidate to lead SJSU in the next exciting chapter of the university's history."
While president, Teniente-Matson has led Texas A&M University-San Antonio's transformation to a comprehensive master's university that has also achieved Hispanic Serving Institution (HSI) designation from the U.S. Department of Education.
Among the strategic initiatives and partnerships the university has developed under her leadership are the creation of the Mays Center for Experiential Learning and Community Engagement, Cisneros Institute for Emerging Leaders, Institute of Water Resource Science and Technology, Cyber Engineering Technology/Cyber Security Research Center, and the university's first Facebook CyberSecurity University Program.
The trustees praised her for building support among elected officials to build an economic regional hub for south Bexar County and partnerships such as the Espada Tract development with the San Antonio River Authority and the University Health expansion.
Teniente-Matson earned a bachelor's degree in business administration from the University of Alaska Fairbanks, an MBA from the University of Alaska Anchorage and is a product of the CSU system,having earned a doctorate in educational leadership from Fresno State.
Interim San Jose State President Steve Perez shared news of the new president, in a message to the campus community Wednesday,
Perez said Teniente-Matson has been recognized world-wide and nationally for her leadership and service. In 2020, she was awarded the Japan Foundation Center for Global Partnership’s 2020 US-Japan Public Intellectual, and in 2019 she was recognized as a Network for Change and Continuous Innovation’s (NCCI) top 20 Thought Leaders in Change and Innovation.
He noted that the new president is currently the chair of the board of directors for the American Association of State Colleges and Universities (AASCU), and The Girl Scouts of the USA Board of Directors. She is also a member of TIAA’s Inclusion and Diversity Council, and currently serves on the City of San Antonio Mayor’s Commission on the Status of Women. Dr. Teniente-Matson was also a mayoral appointee and President of the San Antonio 2018 Tricentennial Commission.
“I appreciate you all for welcoming me as your interim president and for all you do to support our campus community,” Perez said. “It is truly a special place and the future for SJSU is bright.
I look forward to working across the campus throughout the remainder of my interim appointment to set the table for our new president as she prepares to join the SJSU community. Please join me in congratulating Dr. Teniente-Matson and welcoming her to San José State.”