KRISTIN SOBOLIK, PHD
CHANCELLOR, UNIVERSITY OF MISSOURI–ST. LOUIS

Kristin Sobolik is Chancellor and Professor of Anthropology at the University of Missouri–St. Louis. With more than 16,000 students, UMSL is the largest public research university in eastern Missouri and one of the nation’s premier anchor institutions promoting student success, innovation and thriving communities.

Kristin was recruited to UMSL in 2017 to serve as its Provost and Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs and was appointed Chancellor in 2020. As the chief academic and administrative officer charged with providing academic and administrative leadership and management of the UMSL campus, Kristin has enhanced the university’s marketing and fundraising efforts – resulting in enrollment gains and a 21 percent increase in private donations.

Additionally, Kristin has elevated the stature of UMSL’s diversity, research and community engagement efforts by appointing first-ever vice chancellors for diversity, equity and inclusion and research and economic/community engagement, aligning the support structure of the university with goals of its strategic plan.

During her tenure, Kristin also has led the development and implementation of the Strategic Plan 2018-2023 with specific goals and actions focused on student success, research growth, community and economic development, diversity and inclusion and sustainable administrative functions. She also led a highly successful reaccreditation by the Higher Learning Commission resulting in reaffirmation of UMSL’s accreditation for ten years.

Kristin has introduced nine new academic programs in areas such as Computing Technology, Cybersecurity, International Relations, Actuarial Science, Sports Management and Organizational Leadership. Further, she implemented an on-going Curricular Alignment Process to align course offerings to student learning outcomes to increase student success, decrease time to degree and student debt and provide clear assessment guidelines.

Other highlights of Kristin’s tenure include establishing the Community Innovation and Action Center, engaging UMSL’s executive leadership team in the USC Equity Institute, and launching the Student Academic Support Services unit to support student learning through a renovated centralized space in the Millennium Student Center that houses the new University Tutoring Center, Multicultural Student Services, Pre-collegiate Programs, and Student Enrichment and Achievement.

Kristin currently serves on numerous St. Louis-area boards, including Civic Progress, St. Louis Regional Chamber, Cortex Innovation District, Missouri Botanical Garden, BioSTL as well as the Development Committee of the Girl Scouts of Eastern Missouri. Her accomplishments on and off campus prompted the St. Louis Business Journal to recognize Kristin with a “Most Influential Business Women” award for 2020

Prior to UMSL, Kristin served as Dean of the College of Liberal Arts at Wright State University where she oversaw the modernization and expansion of the Creative Arts Center, including the Tom Hanks Center for Motion Pictures, envisioned and implemented the New Media Incubator, and developed the Center for Liberal Arts Student Success for student retention and workforce development. Kristin was honored as a Woman of Distinction by the Girl Scouts of Western Ohio for making significant contributions in STEAM fields and giving hope and inspiration to girls through achievements and passion for the community.

Kristin began her academic career at the University of Maine, quickly distinguishing herself as a teacher, scholar and administrator in the Department of Anthropology, renowned Climate Change Institute and the College of Arts & Science, where she ultimately served as Associate Dean for Research and External Affairs.

Kristin earned her bachelor’s degree in biology from the University of Iowa and master’s and doctoral degrees at Texas A&M University – both in anthropology.  She is an interdisciplinary scholar who has helped develop the fields of archaeobiology and paleonutrition, with more than 100 publications, books and presentations on the topic.