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Dorer steps in again to help CSUEB as provost


Fred Dorer

  • September 21, 2009

No matter the assignment, Fred Dorer always finds a way to fit in.

Dorer, who on Aug. 17 became interim vice president for Academic Affairs and provost for a second time at California State University, East Bay, has no difficulty stepping in to fill temporary needs when called upon by the academic community.

Shortly after Mo Qayoumi become CSUEB president on July 1, 2006, it was Dorer he called upon to oversee the university’s academic affairs. That assignment lasted for about six months, until Mike Mahoney took over the permanent appointment in 2007.

When Mahoney announced in July his intent to return to the classroom as a professor of mathematics and computer science, Qayoumi again called on the former Cal State Bakersfield provost and academic vice president.

Dorer also served as professor of chemistry during his 15 years at the Bakersfield campus until he decided to retire, leaving in August 1999.

He’s built a strong reputation during 42 years serving at six California State University campuses, having been called back into service as an educator and administrator by Cal State Northridge and by CSUEB twice since “retirement.”

“Dr. Dorer is an extremely qualified educator and administrator,” said Qayoumi. “We are fortunate to have someone with his qualifications, who knows the CSU well, while we search for a new vice president of Academic Affairs and provost.”

Dorer served as interim dean of the College of Science and Mathematics for 2004-2005 at Cal State Northridge, where he dealt with planning new facilities, budget alignment with reductions in state allocations, faculty staffing, grants and assessment of student learning.

It was at Northridge where Qayoumi – serving as vice president for Administration and Finance – met Dorer.

“I went back into retirement (after the CSUN assignment) until Mo asked me to join him at Cal State East Bay when he became president here,” said Dorer.  “I’ve been in and out of the Bay Area to live and work over my professional lifetime five or six times.”

He served in the region during his time in the Marines in the mid-1950s and as a research chemist for Shell Development Company in Emeryville, before heading to Southern California to join the faculty in the Chemistry Department at Cal State Fullerton in 1967. He advanced through the ranks to become a full professor in 1974, when he accepted a one-year appointment as associate program director – chemical dynamics – for the National Science Foundation while on leave from Fullerton.

Following the NSF assignment in 1975, he made another return to the Bay Area to become professor and chair for the Department of Chemistry at San Francisco State between 1975 and 1981 and then dean of natural sciences and professor of chemistry at Sonoma State in 1981-82. That was followed by his appointment as vice president for Academic Affairs and provost at Sonoma State, a position he held between 1982 and 1984. He also served there as professor of chemistry, until taking on the same duties at Cal State Bakersfield for the next 15 years.

Although Dorer planned to relax and play more golf when he retired from Cal State Bakersfield, he wasn’t planning to leave academia altogether. He served from 2000 to 2004 as a part-time staff associate and adjunct associate director for the Western Association of Schools and Colleges (WASC) accreditation commission evaluating schools in the western United States. He has served on and chaired a variety of CSU system-wide committees, including library staffing, academic computing, and instructional technologies.

After receiving a bachelor’s degree in chemistry from Cal State Long Beach in 1961, he earned his doctorate in chemistry from the University of Washington in 1965. Dorer had additional education and training from the Institute for Educational Management at Harvard University in 1992 and was a national science post-doctoral fellow at the Physics Institute at the University of Freiburg in Germany in 1965-66.

He and his wife of 51 years, Marilyn, reside in Bakersfield. They are renting an apartment near the Hayward Campus of CSUEB while he serves in his latest interim capacity.

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