North Hall building

Chancellor Maria Gallo, Ph.D.

Chancellor Maria Gallo

I am excited to be UWRF’s 20th chancellor, and I look forward to leading us in the ongoing fulfillment of our mission to help prepare students to be productive, creative, ethical, engaged citizens and leaders with an informed global perspective.

When I was offered this position, I knew it would be an ideal fit as my values align with those of the university. I will be a chancellor committed to authenticity, transparency, and community building.

As I mentioned in my on-campus interview presentation, we know that falcons have vision that scientists estimate to be eight times better than that of humans. With that in mind, I will join campus in having a Falcon focus on selected priorities this coming year. We must remain committed to our tradition of academic excellence and innovation, as well as to student success and student-centered learning in a caring, inclusive and engaged environment. We also know that financial stewardship, external fundraising and telling our story will need our attention in the coming year.

I look forward to partnering with the 12 chancellors in the UW System along with UW-River Falls faculty, staff, alumni, and friends to bring innovation and opportunity to the state and the St. Croix Valley. I am confident that, together, we can sharpen our focus and continue moving the institution forward.

- Chancellor Maria Gallo


About Chancellor Gallo

Gallo is a Fulbright Scholar and a fellow of the American Society of Agronomy and the Crop Science Society of America. She comes to UW-River Falls from Delaware Valley University where she served as president since July 1, 2016.

Prior to her DelVal post, Gallo was dean and director of Research and Cooperative Extension of the College of Tropical Agriculture and Human Resources at the University of Hawaii at Mānoa and was professor and chair of the Agronomy Department at the University of Florida where she specialized in crop improvement. She earned her bachelor’s degree in agronomy from Cornell University and both her master’s degree in crop science and Ph.D. in genetics from North Carolina State University. 

Gallo was selected for the UWRF leadership role by the UW System Board of Regents in May 2021. UW System President Tommy Thompson emphasized Gallo’s extensive academic background in announcing her selection as UWRF’s next chancellor.

“She is a scholar with expertise in agronomy and genetics,” Thompson said. “She will take UW-River Falls to new heights.” 

The naming of Gallo as chancellor follows the departure of Chancellor Dean Van Galen who left UW-River Falls in July 2020 after being selected president of Missouri Southern State University. Van Galen was succeeded by Interim Chancellor Connie Foster who has led the university for the past year.

Beth Schommer
Beth Schommer

Chief of Staff

Email Beth
David Travis
David Travis

Provost and Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs

Email David
Elizabeth Freuh
Elizabeth Frueh

Vice Chancellor for Business and Finance

Email Elizabeth
Rick Foy
Rick Foy

Assistant Chancellor for University Advancement

Email Rick
Dean Yohnk
Dean Yohnk

Dean, College of Arts and Sciences

Email Dean
Dale Gallenberg
Dale Gallenberg

Dean, College of Agriculture, Food and Environmental Sciences

Email Dale
Ogden Rogers
Ogden Rogers

Interim Dean, College of Education and Professional Studies

Email Ogden
Marina Onken
Marina Onken

Interim Dean, College of Business and Economics

Email Marina
Alan Symicek
Alan Symicek

Executive Director, Facilities Planning and Management

Email Alan
Sarah Nelson
Sarah Nelson

Executive Director, Admissions

Email Sarah
Crystal Lanning
Crystal Lanning

Athletics Director

Email Crystal
Jamie Zamjahn
Jamie Zamjahn

Assistant Chancellor for Student Success

Email Jamie


Chancellor’s Student Ambassadors

A select group of student leaders, our Chancellor’s Student Ambassadors (CSAs) represent UWRF in a variety of capacities. CSAs are enthusiastic and proud while playing a vital role in the success of the university, particularly in their dedication to student success and connection. A CSA appointment comes with perks, including scholarships, campus exposure, professional development and networking opportunities. Learn more about CSAs, including how to apply.

Chancellor’s Advisory Council

  • Arlin Albrecht – (Retired) Owner, Red Wing Publishing
  • Jamie Benson – Superintendent, School District of River Falls
  • Chris Blasius – Business Development Associate, IGO Legacy Hotel Group
  • Tom Borowski – President, Hudson Hospital & Clinics
  • Ray French – WiSys Regional Associate
  • Mark Gherty – Gherty and Gherty S.C Attorneys at Law
  • Gregory Gray – Former Chief Compliance Officer of Minnesota Department of Human Services
  • James Harsdorf – Secretary-Emeritus, Wisconsin Department of Agriculture, Food & Consumer Protection
  • Steve Healy – (Retired) Polk County Economic Development Corporation
  • Andrea Jorgenson – Community Service Manager, Xcel Energy
  • Lynn Nelson – Executive Director, West Central WI Regional Planning Commission
  • Nick Ouellette – Superintendent, Hudson School District
  • John Potter – (Retired) Executive Director, Phipps Center for the Arts
  • John Rosenow – Partner, Rosenholm-Wolfe Dairy, Owner Cowsmo
  • Bill Rubin – Executive Director, St. Croix Economic Development Corporation
  • Quentin Schultz – (Retired) President, Eurofins BioDiagnostics, Inc.
  • Scot Simpson – River Falls City Administrator
  • Mark Tyler – (Retired) President, OEM Fabricators
  • Shannon Zimmerman – Entrepreneur   
  • Angel Zimmerman – Belle Vinez Winery