Sheldon M. Schuster
Sheldon M. Schuster has extensive experience in higher education as a researcher, teacher and institute director. Before coming to KGI, Dr. Schuster was Interim Assistant Vice President for Research and Graduate Education, Director of the Biotechnology Program and Professor of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology at the University of Florida in Gainesville. His current research is aimed at understanding the relation between structure and function of ATP synthase and asparagine synthetase with the goal of finding new targets for synthesis of mechanism-based inhibitors of disease related enzymes. Before coming to the University of Florida in 1989, Dr. Schuster was Professor of Chemistry and Biological Sciences at the University of Nebraska, Lincoln. He had gone to the University of Nebraska as an Assistant Professor of Chemistry and Life Sciences in 1976 directly from his postdoctoral work at the University of Wisconsin Institute for Enzyme Research. He earned a PhD in biochemistry at the University of Arizona and BS degree in biochemistry from the University of California, Davis.
Vice President of Finance and Operations
Michael Jones brings to KGI a strong background in financial management, college operations, and higher education leadership. With over 19 years of professional experience his expertise spans both public and private sectors. Most recently he worked for California State University, Long Beach (CSULB) - College of Continuing and Professional Education as the Sr. Director of Finance and Business Services. While there he helped to significantly grow the college's revenue base, reduced overhead costs and provided leadership in all aspects of college operations. With a management and staff team of over 30 professionals, Michael oversaw key areas of the college such as financial management, human resources, facilities management, information technology, and student services which served over 25,000 students a year. In addition, Michael served as the college's interim Associate Dean for Academic Programs for over a year during the college's largest expansion period in its history. Prior to working for CSULB, Michael held positions at Computer Sciences Corporation, The Boeing Company, and the City of Long Beach. Michael holds a BA in Public Administration from California State University, Long Beach and an MBA from Pepperdine University.
Dean of the School of Applied Life Sciences
Henry E. Riggs Professor of Management
Dr. Casper is a leading expert on the 'business of science' and has studied the success and failure of bioscience hubs around the world. He is widely published in the fields of economic sociology, international business and public policy and is the author of a book on the development of the science-based industry in Europe (Creating Silicon Valley in Europe: Public Policy Towards New Technology Industries, Oxford University Press, 2007). Dr. Casper has been selected as an academic year fellow at the Netherlands Institute of Advanced Studies and a summer fellow at the Center for Advanced Study in the Behavioral Sciences, Stanford University. Dr. Casper received his PhD in government from Cornell University. He joined KGI from the University of Cambridge, where he was a university lecturer in innovation and entrepreneurship at the Judge Institute of Management Studies. He was previously employed as a senior research fellow at the Social Science Center in Berlin.
Founding Dean, School of Pharmacy;
Professor of Pharmacy
Kathy D. Webster is the Founding Dean of the KGI School of Pharmacy, and is guiding the school through the accreditation process. Dr. Webster has extensive experience helping to establish and working with new schools of pharmacy, including the University of Maryland Eastern Shore School of Pharmacy, where she recently served as professor and associate dean of academic affairs. Previously, she was the assistant dean and chair of pharmaceutical sciences and a professor at Feik School of Pharmacy, University of Incarnate Word in San Antonio, Texas. She held several positions at Campbell University in Buies Creek, North Carolina, including director of science education outreach, director of the pharmaceutical analysis laboratory and associate and assistant professor of medicinal chemistry. Also, as head of the analytical section there, she helped found and develop the Campbell University Pharmaceutical Sciences Institute (CUPSI), which provides contract services to small local and regional pharmaceutical companies. She holds a Doctor of Pharmacy from the University of the Pacific in Stockton, California, and a PhD in medicinal chemistry from the University of Minnesota, Minneapolis.
Stephen M. Kosslyn
Founding Dean, School of Arts and Sciences, Minerva Schools at KGI
Stephen joined Minerva from Stanford University, where he had been serving as Director of the Center for Advanced Study in Behavioral Sciences, the world's preeminent institution in the field. Prior to Stanford, Stephen was John Lindsley Professor of Psychology in Memory of William James and Dean of Social Sciences at Harvard University, having previously been chair of the Department of Psychology at Harvard.
Stephen has been recognized by election to the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, by three honorary doctorates, a Guggenheim Fellowship, and the National Academy of Sciences Initiatives in Research Award. He has published over 300 scientific papers and 13 books, including his most recent, Top Brain/Bottom Brain (with G. W. Miller), which develops a new theory of "cognitive modes."
Stephen earned his Ph.D. in Psychology from Stanford University and his B.A. in Psychology from UCLA.
Dean of Research
Professor Grill is the Dean of Research at KGI. In addition to teaching courses at the Keck Graduate Institute, he also teaches undergraduates at the Keck Science Department of the Claremont Colleges. With ongoing research programs in vaccine development and disease diagnostics, collaborations with the University of Botswana, the Botswana Vaccine Institute, and the International Livestock Research Institute in Kenya, aim to address health care delivery in developing countries. This includes the development of novel technology for the detection of infectious diseases, as well as the development and production of low cost vaccines for developing countries. Dr. Grill was one of two founders who started Large Scale Biology Corporation (LSBC) in 1987, which became a publicly-held company in 2000. The biotechnology company made therapeutic drugs, pharmaceuticals and vaccines using a unique plant viral gene expression technology. In the development of these drugs, Dr. Grill developed innovative bioprocessing technology to produce and purify the molecules expressed in plants. They had successful animal and human clinical trials, and were able to produce patient-specific vaccines as a therapeutic treatment for non-Hodgkin's lymphoma cancer patients. Dr. Grill received his Ph.D. from the University of California in Riverside in 1979. He has published over 25 scientific papers and is an inventor on more than 30 issued US and world patents.
E. Sofia Toro
Dean of Student Engagement and Enrollment Services
With more than 13 years of experience in the education and non-profit worlds, Sofia Toro brings a passion for education to her position. Toro came to KGI in September 2008 and oversees the admissions, recruiting, student services, financial aid, and international student processing for KGI's graduate programs. She brings operations expertise as well as experience in professional school admissions, thanks to her work in both undergraduate and graduate programs. Her current responsibilities at KGI encompass all aspects of student engagement and student success. She has been successful at streamlining processes within recruitment, admissions, student affairs and financial aid; helping our students enjoy their experience at KGI. Most notably increasing our efforts to recruit international students from many different countries. Before joining KGI, Toro helped improve the organizational effectiveness of LA Universal Preschool (LAUP), the largest universal preschool effort in the history of the US educational system. While there, she co-designed and implemented a continuous quality improvement system, and she facilitated the California Award for Performance Excellence training for organizational learning, process improvement, problem solving and implementation. Prior to her work at LAUP, Toro spent more than five years in MBA admissions at Pepperdine University. Toro holds a bachelor's degree in business administration from Woodbury University and an MBA from Pepperdine University.
Associate Vice President/Secretary to the Board of Trustees
Elizabeth Wright is responsible for supporting President Sheldon M. Schuster and the KGI Board of Trustees in areas such as governance, planning, strategic direction, intellectual property, and coordination of special projects and initiatives. Wright came to KGI after 11 years as executive assistant to the president at Western Washington University. Prior to that, she served as executive assistant to the executive vice president in the University of Wisconsin System and as assistant to the chancellor of the UW Colleges. Wright was a founding member and has served as chair of the board of directors of the National Association for Presidential Assistants in Higher Education. She is an active member of the Claremont Rotary Club. A graduate of the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee where she earned a BA in psychology, Wright received a JD, MPA and MA in political science from the University of Wisconsin-Madison.
Associate Vice President and Director of Corporate Partnerships
As KGI's gateway to the $300 billion life science industry, Diana Bartlett is responsible for creating and nurturing mutually-rewarding relationships with pharmaceutical, biotech, ag/industrial bio, medical device, diagnostic, and research tools companies. Since 2004, she has been instrumental in securing over 150 Team Masters Projects, and has launched corporate education, an annual women's conference, and other programs designed to satisfy unmet needs of companies both large and small.
Bartlett is also responsible for the Office of Career Services.
Prior to joining the Institute, Bartlett spent over 20 years in progressively more senior new product development posts for GE, Johnson & Johnson, and other firms.
A member of the Network of Academic Corporate Relations Officers, Bartlett also is a certified Project Management Professional and also holds certificates as a personal trainer and lifestyle coach.
She has an MBA in marketing from the University of Chicago and a BA in journalism from the University of Iowa.
Director of Human Resources
Cheryl, with experience in business and human development, organizational development, career development, recruitment, performance management, and operation's management oversees Human Resources and Payroll for KGI's faculty, staff and students. Prior to joining KGI in April of 2013, Cheryl was the Director of Career Development for Westwood College, where she helped prepare undergraduate students for careers in their field of study.
From head women's softball coach at Occidental College to Samson Products, Cheryl has held such positions as Western Regional Sales Manager, Business and Human Development Manager, and General Manager. While at Samson Products, Cheryl helped increase sales and profitability, and introduced training and development techniques that further enhanced the performance of management and staff.
Cheryl received a bachelor's degree in Behavioral Sciences from California State Polytechnic University, Pomona and attended graduate school at Chapman University where she was awarded a Master's of Science in Human Resources.
Assistant Vice President of Advancement and Chief Marketing Officer
Kelly Esperias was promoted to AVPA and CMO in January of 2016. She comes to KGI from Servite College Prep High School, where she worked for four years as the Director of the Communications and Marketing department. Her most recent accomplishments there included a complete website redesign and implementation of a strategic branding initiative.
Before arriving at Servite, Kelly worked for seven years for Anschutz Entertainment Group (AEG) where she was the senior manager of operations at Angel Stadium overseeing the retail department. She was responsible for the planning, marketing and operations management of some of the largest sports and entertainment events in the country, including the 2010 Major League Baseball All Star Game at Angel Stadium and the 2011 National Basketball Association All Star Game and Fan Fest at Staples Center.
Recruited to Cal Poly Pomona as a full scholarship student-athlete, Kelly received her bachelor's degree in Business Administration and holds an MBA from the University of La Verne.