Ron Koger, SPSU’s vice president for student and enrollment services, will take over as interim president July 1 after the departure of President Lisa Rossbacher, who is leaving SPSU to assume the presidency of Humboldt State University in Arcata, Calif.
Koger, who has been at SPSU since 1997, was announced as Rossbacher’s successor by University System of Georgia Chancellor Hank Huckaby on Thursday.
“Ron has a long history with Southern Poly and is the right person at this important point in the institution’s history to help provide leadership and guidance to faculty, staff and students,” Huckaby said. “We are glad he has accepted this important leadership role.”
Koger will be interim president until the consolidation of SPSU and Kennesaw State University is completed in January 2015. The merged schools will then be helmed by KSU President Dan Papp.
Koger’s appointment is a good move for the university, according to Jim Cooper, SPSU’s assistant vice president of university communications.
“He’s one of the most-liked people on campus,” Cooper said. “It helps to calm some of the angst on campus; he’s a very caring person.”
Cooper said Koger has helped grow SPSU’s enrollment by 78 percent in the last 16 years. Cooper also said Koger has been the go-to person for interim roles in the past, including acting executive director of advancement and interim chief information officer, and has also taught classes.
“He has a good grasp of the whole picture of the institution,” Cooper said.
Koger has been in his current position at SPSU since 2000 and earned a salary of $145,689, according to John Millsaps, university system spokesman. As interim president, Millsaps said Koger’s pay will increase to $180,000. Rossbacher earned a base salary of $188,674, and had a total compensation package of $221,474, Millsaps said.
Previously, Koger served as vice president of enrollment management from 1997 to 2000. He has a Bachelor of Science in education from Pittsburg State University, in Kansas, and he earned a master’s and doctoral degree in education from the University of Kansas.