Sacha Kopp Named New Provost for Gonzaga University

Sacha Kopp
Sacha Kopp, Provost

April 22, 2022
Gonzaga University News Service

SPOKANE, Wash. – Gonzaga University’s board of trustees on Friday ratified President Thayne McCulloh’s appointment of an accomplished researcher, experienced senior administrator, and former liberal arts dean to become the school’s next provost beginning June 6.

Sacha Kopp, senior vice chancellor for academic affairs at the University of Nebraska at Omaha, holds bachelor’s, master’s and doctoral degrees from the University of Chicago. Kopp has substantial higher education experience, having served in administrative positions at Syracuse University, the University of Texas at Austin, and the State University of New York at Stony Brook. In collaboration with faculty, his research has concentrated on the science of teaching and learning. Dr. Kopp’s early work as a physicist includes research at particle accelerators nationally and internationally.

In announcing the appointment, McCulloh cited Kopp’s fit for Gonzaga.

“Having served in positions of leadership that involve work with both academic affairs and student affairs, Dr. Kopp is committed to working to maintain and create opportunities for integrative learning and development,” McCulloh said. “His record of achievement underscores a deep commitment to collaborative leadership, shared governance and increasing diversity in, and inclusive practices for, faculty, staff and student populations. 

“I believe that Dr. Kopp’s extensive administrative experience, emphasis on collaboration, focus on building and stewardship of resources, and calm and congenial demeanor will make a positive and constructive impact on our university in the coming years.”

Kopp, a native of Dubuque, Iowa, was educated in Catholic elementary and secondary schools and inspired by his father, who served on the faculty of a Catholic college for 40 years.

“Dr. Kopp is excited by the prospect of serving an institution committed to education of the whole person in the context of a Catholic, Jesuit and humanistic tradition,” McCulloh said, adding that the new provost “described his desire to serve at Gonzaga, a mission-based institution, as a true ‘calling.’ “

Kopp and his wife, Gretchen, have two children: Eleanor, studying trumpet at Indiana University-Bloomington; and Eli, a cellist who will begin college later this year. Meanwhile, Gretchen is pursuing ordination in the Lutheran Church and serves as Protestant campus chaplain at Creighton University in Omaha.

Kopp previously served in a number of administrative and faculty positions at Syracuse University; the University of Texas at Austin, where he was associate dean of the College of Natural Sciences; and the State University of New York at Stony Brook, where he was dean of the College of Arts and Sciences.