Meet the President

Interim University President Dr. Dale-Elizabeth Pehrsson

Interim President Dr. Dale-Elizabeth Pehrsson

Dr. Dale-Elizabeth Pehrsson stepped inter her role as interim president of California University of Pennsylvania on July 25, 2021. 

She also serves as president of Clarion University and interim president of Edinboro University, and as lead for the Pennsylvania State System of Higher Education's Western Integration, a project designed to integrate the three schools into one institution.

Prior to joining the State System as Clarion’s president in 2018, “Dr. Dale” had been dean of the College of Education and Human Services at Central Michigan University since 2012. 

She has more than 25 years of experience in higher education, beginning her academic career as an affiliate faculty member and clinical supervisor for counselor education at Idaho State University in 1991. Previously, she worked in the healthcare field, as both a counselor and registered nurse. 

Education and service

Pehrsson epitomizes the American Dream through education, first earning associate degrees in liberal arts and nursing, then returning to school for further education. She has a Bachelor of Science in liberal studies from the University of State of New York-Albany. She holds a Master of Education in curriculum, instruction and supervision, a Master of Counseling, and a Doctor of Education in counselor education and counseling, all from Idaho State University. She also studied art therapy at the University of Illinois-Chicago, as well as metalsmithing and studio art as a post-doctoral student at Idaho State. 

Pehrsson spent a year as a presidential fellow with the American Council of Education, where she focused on faculty and staff development, board of trustees relations, fundraising and capital campaigns, finance, accreditation, inclusive excellence, advancing technology, strategic planning, community engagement and service learning. 

She was a faculty member and chair of the Department of Counselor Education at University of Nevada, Las Vegas, after serving as an associate professor of counselor education at Oregon State University. She has been a faculty member at Portland State University and Sam Houston State University in Texas. 

Pehrsson has worked as an elementary school counselor and a child and family counselor. She and her husband, Dr. Bob Pehrsson, founded a clinic for children with literacy needs and learning disabilities, and she was chief operating officer for patient and clinical services at Bingham Memorial Hospital in Idaho. She was associate director of nursing and patient services and captain of the maternal transport Life Flight team at an Idaho medical center. She has worked as a registered nurse at the Lexington School for the Deaf in New York City. 

Pehrsson is a licensed and nationally certified counselor and a member of various professional organizations. She served for two years as president of the Michigan Council of Deans for Education at State Colleges and Universities and remains a member of the group's Leadership Council. She has authored or co-authored numerous scholarly publications, including a peer-reviewed book, “Core Issues in Child Counseling.” 

An avid cyclist, Pehrsson enjoys riding the trails of western Pennsylvania, hiking throughout the country, reading, watching old movies and drawing. 

  The Plan The Mission  

Contact the President's Office

The President's Office is located in Old Main, Room 110, where the University's leadership team and Council of Trustees hold regular meetings. 

Office of the President
Campus Box 95
250 University Ave.
California, PA 15419 

Phone: 724-938-4400
Fax: 724-938-4373 

Kelly Moran-Repinski
Chief of Staff/Executive Director for University Affairs
Office of the President
Phone: 724-938-4400

Anna Stewart 
Executive Staff Assistant
Office of the President
Phone: 724-938-4400

Staci Tedrow 
Administrative Assistant II
Office of the President
Phone: 724-938-4400