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President's Cabinet

Laura Woodworth-Ney

Dr. Laura Woodworth-Ney

Executive Vice President and Provost

Office: Admin 264, President's Suite 921 S. 8th Ave,Stop 8063 Pocatello ID, 83209-8063

(208) 282-2171

(208) 282-4487

Laura Woodworth-Ney was named Idaho State University's Executive Vice President and Provost August 14, 2016.  Previously, she served as the Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs since June 24, 2013, and as ISU’s Associate Vice President for Academic Affairs for three years before that.

As the Executive Vice President and Provost (EVPP) she is the Chief Academic Officer of the University. The EVPP has oversight over units that directly impact instructional, academic and research programs. This would include the following administrative units: (1) outreach campuses/centers; (2) student affairs; (3) research, (4) finance and administration; (6) libraries; and (7) divisions, institutes, centers, and colleges. In addition, the EVPP develops and assures compliance with administrative directives that support the mission of the University.

Woodworth-Ney is nationally active on topics related to higher education and access, and is Idaho's representative on the Western Interstate Commission for Higher Education's Academic Forum.  She chairs ISU’s Institutional Effectiveness & Assessment Council and is responsible for ISU’s regional accreditation by the Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities.

Woodworth-Ney's former administrative appointments at ISU include chair of the Department of History and co-director of Women Studies. She also served on the ISU Faculty Senate, both as a senator and as an elected member of the Faculty Senate Executive Committee. Woodworth-Ney, who has been at ISU since 1999, has authored more than 30 articles, book reviews, and scholarly essays, as well as three books (several co-authored).

Woodworth-Ney earned a bachelor degree in English from the University of Idaho, and a Ph.D. in American History and Public History from Washington State University.

Woodworth-Ney, a native of Rupert, is a fourth-generation Idahoan.

Tingey Kent

Dr. Kent Tingey

Vice President for University Advancement

Office: Administration 264, President's Suite 921 S. 8th Ave, Stop 8024 Pocatello ID, 83

(208) 282-3198

Dr. Kent Tingey is vice president for university advancement.  He is responsible for the advancement of the University through public and government relations, marketing and communications, development, the Idaho State University Foundation, and alumni relations. Under his direction the University raised $152.5 million in its first-ever capital campaign.  Dr. Tingey has been with ISU for 26 years. Prior to that, he served as the Executive Assistant to U.S. Congressman Wayne Owens in Washington D.C.

Dr. Cornelis J. Van der Schyf

Dr. Cornelis J. Van der Schyf

Vice President for Research

Office: Administration Building 264 921 S. 8th Ave, Stop 8130 Pocatello ID, 83209-8130

(208) 282-3134

Neels Van der Schyf earned his BPharm, MSc, DSc (PhD), and DTE degrees from North-West University (NWU, formerly Potchefstroom University) in South Africa, and spent 1986-7 as a postdoctoral fellow in the Department of Medicinal Chemistry at the University of Connecticut and at the National Magnet Lab at MIT, Cambridge, MA.

Before joining Idaho State University in May 2013 as Dean of the Graduate School and Professor of Biomedical and Pharmaceutical Sciences, Van der Schyf was Associate Dean for Research & Graduate Studies, Founding Chair and Professor of Pharmaceutical Sciences in the College of Pharmacy, and Professor of Neurobiology in the College of Medicine at Northeast Ohio Medical University (NEOMED). At NEOMED he played a pivotal role in the establishment of the College of Pharmacy and was the primary author/architect in creating and establishing NEOMED's graduate program in Integrated Pharmaceutical Medicine (IPM) and in the creation of the College of Graduate Studies. He was also intimately involved with the planning and design of the new Research and Graduate Education (RGE) Building, a $42 million campus expansion focused on graduate research and education.

As of February 2015, he has published 116 peer-reviewed research and review articles, 205 abstracts and presentations - many of these as invited keynote speaker; 10 book chapters, several reports to industry, and numerous journal editorials. He holds 14 patents. He is the Editor-in- Chief of the Journal of Biophysical Chemistry and is or has been a member of the editorial advisory boards for an additional 11 international research journals and an invited guest editor for one. The impact of his research is reflected by his work receiving more than 2,400 peer citations in the literature. He has an h-index of 30 and an i10 index of 66.

Van der Schyf served as visiting professor in Australia (University of Queensland, Brisbane), Belgium (FUNDP, Namur), USA (Virginia Tech), and currently as Emeritus Extraordinary Professor at Northwest University (South Africa), and has extensive international experience. In addition to serving or having served (since 2002) as a chartered and ad hoc member on several NIH Study Sections and many other national and international research granting agencies (including the UK, Portugal, South Africa and the Russian Federation), he is a member of the Phi Beta Delta Honor Society and Sigma Xi, and has received several teaching and research honors, including "Teacher of the Year" and "Most Cited Paper" awards, the APSSA Upjohn Achievement Award and South Africa's highest honor in drug discovery research, the FARMOVS Prize for Pharmacology and Drug Development.

Van der Schyf is also the recipient of the 2010 Olson/Blair Award for Administrative Excellence. He has been the major advisor for more than 20 graduate students since 1985 (11 PhDs, remainder MS degrees) and served on the graduate committees of more than 30 additional graduate students. He is an avid marathon runner.

Rex Force

Rex W. Force, Pharm.D.

Vice President for Health Sciences


Rex W. Force, Pharm.D., BCPS, FCCP is Vice President for Health Science at ISU. Previously he served as Associate Dean for Clinical Research in the Division of Health Sciences at ISU and holds a tenured professorship in the Department of Family Medicine while directing the research in that department. He is also Professor of Pharmacy Practice. Dr. Force earned his B.S. in Pharmacy from Oregon State University and his Doctor of Pharmacy (Pharm.D.) degree from the University of Texas and the University of Texas Health Science Center in San Antonio, after which he completed a two-year clinical research fellowship at Ohio State University. He is a board-certified pharmacotherapy specialist, a Fellow of the American College of Clinical Pharmacy, and has an additional certification in health care quality improvement.

Dr. Force has been instrumental in developing the telepharmacy program at ISU which provides much-needed access to medications to rural Idahoans in Butte and Custer Counties. Heavily involved in clinical research, he is currently a Board Trustee of the Research Institute of the American College of Clinical Pharmacy and a member of the Steering Committee of the WWAMI-region Practice and Research Network. In addition, he serves as the ISU liaison to the Mountain West Clinical Translational Research Infrastructure Network, a 7-state, 11-institution consortium designed to improve health research in the western US. Dr. Force has authored over 50 professional and research publications, presented over 100 research papers or abstracts, and speaks regularly at professional meetings. With a focus on pharmacotherapy, evidence-based medicine, medication safety, and rural health service delivery, Dr. Force and his collaborators have received grants and contracts in excess of $5.5 million while at ISU. Dr. Force has been on the faculty at Idaho State University since 1993 and has received honors and awards for his research, teaching and professional service.

Lyn Redington

Lyn Redington

Vice President for Student Affairs

Office: 921 S. 8th Ave., Stop 8123

(208) 282-2315

Lyn Redington joined Idaho State University in May 2018 as the Vice President for Student Affairs. In this role, she oversees the Career Center, University Housing, Disability Services, Counseling & Testing Center, Student Life, and the Student Unions. The Union operations include the University Bookstore, Outdoor Adventure Center, and Student Involvement and Orientation.

Redington is active as a presenter and trainer on topics of student success, leadership, transition, change management, cross-functional partnerships, and parents and families. She has served as an adjunct assistant professor, teaching undergraduate and graduate courses in student affairs.

Prior to joining ISU, Redington worked at the University of Wisconsin – Whitewater, Indiana University, the University of Arizona, the University of Northern Iowa, and the University of Iowa.

Redington earned her B.S., M.S., and Ph.D. from Iowa State University.


Brian Hickenlooper

Brian Hickenlooper

Interim Chief Financial Officer

Office: 921 S. 8th Ave. Administration Building No. 10, Suite 229

(208) 282-3540

Brian Hickenlooper was appointed as the interim Chief Financial Officer for Idaho State University in August of 2016. He is responsible for the financial service areas of the University. Brian’s initial position at ISU was that of the University Business Officer for the Kasiska Division of Health Sciences and later promoted as an Assistant Vice President for Finance and Administration.

Prior to coming to ISU he had a 27 year career with Intermountain Health Care starting at Utah Valley Regional Medical Center in Provo, Utah where he worked in hospital reimbursement and budgeting. Later he transferred to Burley, Idaho as the Chief Financial Officer and took an opportunity to be part of the administrative team building the new Cassia Regional Medical Center. During his 18 year tenure at Cassia Regional Medical Center, a Dartmouth Atlas Project reported the hospital having the lowest costs in the United States for traditional Medicare patients during the last two years of their lives.

Hickenlooper earned a Bachelor degree in Finance from Brigham Young University and holds a MBA in Health Care Administration.

Joanne Hirase-Stacey, JD

Joanne Hirase-Stacey, JD

General Counsel/Chief Compliance Officer

Office: 921 So. 8th Ave., Stop 8410, Pocatello, ID 83209

(208) 282-3924

Joanne Hirase-Stacey is General Counsel, Chief Compliance Officer, and Risk Manager, as well as an adjunct professor in the College of Business. The Office of General Counsel has responsibility for: reviewing, drafting, and negotiating contracts and Affiliation Agreements; compliance with laws, regulations, and policies; oversight of University policies and procedures; workers’ compensation and insurance claims and management; activity waivers; and litigation management. Also reporting to the office are Public Safety, Equal Employment Opportunity/Affirmative Action/Diversity, Athletic Compliance, the Director of Research Contracts, and the Director of Technology Commercialization.

Before coming to ISU, she was corporate counsel for Hoku Corporation, ON Semiconductor, and State Farm Fire & Casualty Company.

Joanne earned her Bachelor of Arts degree in Political Science and her Juris Doctor from the University of Utah. She is now proud to call herself a Bengal.


Kent Kunz

Kent Kunz

Director of Government Relations

(208) 334-4781

Kent hails from Pocatello, ID.  He received his bachelor’s degree in political science from Idaho State University prior to beginning a career with Union Pacific Railroad, which lasted until his 2005 retirement.  After years of local political activity, Kent was elected to the Idaho State House of Representatives in 1996.  He served three terms in the House of Representatives and was Chairman of the Ways and Means Committee from 1999 to 2002.  Kent has worked as Legislative Director for Governor Kempthorne from 2003 to 2006.  In 2006 Kent was appointed Director of Government Relations for Idaho State University with offices in Boise.   Kent and his wife Kitty now reside in Boise and have been married for 44 years.  They are the parents of four grown children and have sixteen grandchildren.

Gaines Randy

Randy Gaines

Chief Information Officer

Office: Information Technology Services (ITS) Business Administration B24 921 S 8th Ave

(208) 282-2873

Randy Gaines has served as Chief Information Officer since 2004, but has worked at ISU for almost 25 years. Randy initially came to ISU to help start the University's video distance Learning program and later served as Media Center Manager before becoming CIO. Outside of Information Technology Randy has helped teach Freshman Seminar while at ISU, and is currently serving as an I Love ISU Team Captain. Randy also serves on ISU's Accreditation Steering committee. Prior to coming to ISU Randy served as Pocatello Bureau Chief for KIFI TV news and worked for KIFI TV's Idaho Video.

Lewis Eakins

Lewis A. Eakins, Ph.D.

Chief Security Officer/Director of Public Safety

Office: Public Safety 625 E. Humbolt, Stop 8140 Pocatello, ID 83201-8140

(208) 282-2832

Director Eakins has led the Department of Public Safety since 2015 with overall responsibilities for patrol operations, the dispatch center, parking enforcement, CCTV systems, Bengal card, and emergency management. Prior to joining Idaho State University, Director Eakins served as the Chief of Police at Oakwood University in Huntsville, AL; as a Captain with the METRO Transit Police in Houston, TX; and as the Assistant Chief of Police at Texas Southern University, also in Houston, TX.

Director Eakins is board certified (CPP) in Security Management by ASIS International, as well as being certified by FEMA as a Professional Continuity Practitioner (PCP). He has attended numerous law enforcement and emergency management training courses and recently graduated from FEMA’s National Emergency Management Executive Academy Cohort II. Director Eakins has held leadership positions at the state and national levels in security, law enforcement, and emergency management trade associations. He has presented nationally and internationally at conferences on the topics of workplace violence, disaster preparedness, active shooter survival, and leadership. He has undergraduate degrees in Police Science and Criminal Justice; a M.S. degree in Security Management; and a Ph.D. in Public Policy and Administration with a concentration in Homeland Security Policy and Coordination. Director Eakins’ research interests are in academic continuity and public safety leadership.

S. Hossein Mousavinezhad

S. Hossein Mousavinezhad

Professor and Associate Program Director, ISU Faculty Senate co-Chair

(208) 282-3292

Dr. Mousavinezhad joined Idaho State University in July 2007 as Electrical Engineering Department Chair. He is Founding General Chair of Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE) International Conferences on Electro Information Technology and a Fellow of American Society for Engineering Education (ASEE) serving as Program Chair for Energy Conversion and Conservation Division, 2017-2018. Dr. Mousavinezhad has co-authored a recent book, Mobile (Hand-Held) Computing and was a PI on a research grant (wireless communications and enhancing access to electromagnetic spectrum) funded by the National Science Foundation. He teaches courses in Circuits & Systems, Electromagnetics and Digital Signal Processing.

Professor Mousavinezhad is ISU’s Engineering Accreditation Coordinator and an ABET Program Evaluator for Electrical and Computer Engineering Programs. He has prepared self-study reports for ABET ISU campus visits since 2007 and visits domestic and non-domestic engineering programs as PEV. Dr. Mousavinezhad’s research interests includes Bio-electromagnetics, Engineering Education, and Digital Signal Processing. Before joining Idaho State University he was Professor and Electrical/Computer Engineering (ECE) Department Chair at Western Michigan University. Professor Mousavinezhad’s graduate degrees are from Michigan State University and his BSEE degree is from National Taiwan University. He has been serving as ISU CoSE faculty senator since 2014.

Laura Ahola-Young

Laura Ahola-Young

Assistant Professor of Art, ISU Faculty Senate Co-Chair

Laura Ahola-Young received her MFA from San Jose State University in 2001.  She is an Assistant Professor of Art and leads the Painting and Drawing program. Originally from northern Minnesota, Laura has been influenced by landscapes, winters, ice and resilience. She is currently developing work that incorporates scientific research, Landscape and personal narrative. Her paintings and drawings have been on exhibit nationally.

Mia Benkenstein

Mia Benkenstein

Staff Council President, Animal Facilities Manager

Office: 921 S 8th Ave Stop 8007 Pocatello, ID 83209


Mia Benkenstein, AA, RLATG has been the Animal Facilities Manager under the Office for Research Outreach and Compliance since 2005. She came to ISU in 2001 following years of substitute teaching while raising her children and decided to try something new.

As an Animal Technician she rose to manager of the Animal Facility and has been involved in the research community both nationally and locally. She has been the President of the local Mountain West American Association for Laboratory Animal Science Branch (AALAS) twice, and has served on the board since she started at the university in animal science. On the National level she served 5 years on the AALAS Education Resource Committee contributing to the publication of 5 educational and teaching manuals and was Co-chair of the District 8 regional meeting in 2017 while being Staff President Elect. She is continually looking for more unique and exciting ways to learn and teach.

She is excited to serve as the Staff Council President 2017-2018 school year with many ideas for involving the staff in activities, university committees and being the “Voice of the Staff” for Idaho State University.

Logan Schmidt

Logan Schmidt

President ASISU

Office: 1065 S 8th Ave, Room 215

I was born and raised here in Pocatello! I graduated from Highland High in 2015.I will be a senior in the College of Business pursuing an Accounting Degree. During my years here at ISU I have had the opportunity to be a CPI for Marketing and Communications, I was an Ambassador for two years, and a finance officer for ASISU before becoming the President!

Fergus “Paul” Briggs

Fergus “Paul” Briggs

President of the Alumni Association

A retired U.S. Marine Corps Colonel with 30 years of distinguished military service, Paul Briggs was born and raised in Pocatello, Idaho, graduated from Highland High School in 1967 and Idaho State University with a BA in Government in 1972. Commissioned a Second Lieutenant in 1972, he completed extensive basic and technical training and was designated an Air Defense Control Officer.  Assigned to Marine Air Control Squadron 23, Third Marine Aircraft Wing in California, he was involved in radar control of fighters, anti-aircraft missiles and employment of the Marine Tactical Data System.  He was released from active duty in 1975, and continued his Marine affiliation in various Reserve assignments, including Marine Air Control Squadron 24, Fourth Marine Aircraft Wing, Denver, CO from 1983-85.   He deployed on large-scale exercises and individually as a ground radar controller with Marine Corps fighter squadrons, achieving command and control ratings as weapons controller, senior weapons director and senior air director.  He was promoted to First Lieutenant in 1974, Captain in 1977 and Major in 1983.  
Briggs returned to full-time active duty in 1985, with later selection to career status in the Marines’ Active Reserve Program.  He served as Training and Programs Officer for the Commandant of the Marine Corps (Reserve Affairs), Washington, DC from 1985-87. From 1988-91 he was assigned as Executive Officer, Reserve Support Unit at Marine Corps Base, Camp Pendleton, CA.  During Operation Desert Shield/Desert Storm, 1990-91, he led large-scale mobilization and demobilization efforts as Deputy Commander of Mobilization Training Command.  From 1991-95, he was assigned to Headquarters, Fourth Marine Division (Reinforced), and later reassigned to Marine Forces Reserve Headquarters, both located in New Orleans, LA.  There, he held key leadership positions in operations, training and plans.  He played a principal role in establishing the then -new Marine Forces Reserve Headquarters, its mission, functions and organization.  As Force G-3 Operations Officer, he implemented training exercise and employment planning and execution that employed automated financial management and resulted in improved Reserve Force deployment support to the active component.  As Assistant Chief of Staff G-5 Plans, he led efforts to fund better equipment for Marine Corps Reserve, and spearheaded Marine Corps Reserve efforts in The Base Realignment and Closure Commission 1995.  These initiatives resulted in preserving unit readiness and avoiding millions in relocation and new unit stand up costs.  He was promoted to Lieutenant Colonel in 1989 and Colonel in 1995.

From 1996-99, he was assigned as School Head and Deputy Director at Marine Corps University, Quantico, VA.  There, he helped establish a College of Continuing Education and contributed to a Masters Degree program accreditation through the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools.  He led Joint Chiefs of Staff final accreditation for the Marine Corps Command and Staff Nonresident Program.  From 1999-2000 he was a Branch Head for Marine Corps Reserve Personnel Plans and Policy, managing a $400 Million budget as well as recruiting, training and retention for over 39,000 drilling Reservists and 60,000 Individual Ready Reservists nationwide.  In 2000, he was assigned as Senior Marine Advisor and Deputy Director of Readiness (Integration), Office of the Secretary of Defense (Reserve Affairs).  There, he worked in coordination with the Services and the Joint Staff on blueprinting the Reserve Components’ role in future military strategy and force structure in The Quadrennial Defense Review, The Defense Planning Guidance, European Defense Planning, the Unified Command Plan, the Contingency Planning Guidance, the Transformation Planning Guidance and the Nuclear Posture Review, in addition to other studies, reports and documents for Congress.  He was in the Pentagon during the attack by a terrorist-hijacked airliner on 09/11/2001.

During his military career, Briggs received numerous physical fitness awards, and was an inter-service team selection and competitor on the U.S. NATO Military Pentathlon Team during 1979-84.   His professional military education includes the Air Force Command and Staff Reserve Course, the Joint Services Staff College and NATO War College Reserve Courses, and numerous Marine Corps amphibious warfare staff planning courses.  He is a 1988 graduate of the Marine Corps Command and Staff College, a 1996 graduate of the Naval War College with an MA in National Security and Strategic Studies, and he earned a certification in national security studies from the National Defense University in 2003. Briggs’ personal decorations include the Defense Superior Service Medal, the Legion of Merit twice, the Meritorious Service twice, the Naval Commendation Medal, the Naval Achievement Medal, the Office of Secretary of Defense Staff Badge, as well as numerous service medals and unit citations.

Following military retirement, Briggs served in the federal civil service from 2002-2010.  This included two years as a special assistant, one year as Deputy Director of Operations and Programs and five years as Director Office of Agency Management and Budget, Veterans, Employment and Training Service, U.S. Department of Labor.  He successfully managed an annual budget and appropriation of about $230 Million and received twelve Secretary of Labor exceptional service awards along with numerous cash performance awards.  Following a second retirement, Briggs worked for two years as a senior program analyst federal contractor hired to implement a major reorganization of the Reserve Forces Policy Board (RFPB), Office of the Secretary of Defense.

Colonel Briggs has been married for thirty years to the former Gina Marie David from Lackawanna, NY.  She is a retired federal civil service officer and a retired Major, U.S. Air Force Reserve, with over 26 years of active and reserve service.  She holds  a BA from San Diego State University and an MA in Educational Technology Leadership from George Washington University.  They have resided in Alexandria, Virginia since 2000.

Stacey Gibson

Stacey Gibson

Director of Equal Opportunity

Office: Affirmative Action & Diversity 921 S 8th Ave., Stop 8315

(208) 282-3973

Stacey Gibson, MPA, CAAP has been at ISU since 2006, most recently appointed as the Director of Equal Opportunity, Affirmative Action and Diversity in 2012. Ms. Gibson oversees ISU’s civil rights, EEO and diversity initiatives in addition to programming and education at the Diversity Resource Center and the Janet C. Anderson Gender Resource Center. Ms. Gibson also serves as ISU’s Title IX administrator and is responsible for all civil rights investigations. An Idaho native, Ms. Gibson spent 14 years prior to coming to ISU in the heavy equipment and automobile industries.


(208) 282-3440

Administration Building

921 S. 8th Ave, STOP 8310

Pocatello ID, 83209-8310


921 South 8th Avenue
Pocatello, Idaho, 83209
(208) 282-4636

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