May 20, 2019

Dear colleagues,

As a next step in her 29 years of service at UCI, Judith Stepan-Norris will be transitioning from her role as vice provost for academic planning back to the faculty, effective August 31, 2019. Dr. Stepan-Norris will take a sabbatical to resume work on a book about the U.S. labor movement over the last 115 years and then return to her position as a professor of sociology in the School of Social Sciences.

Highlights from her five-year term leading the Office of Academic Planning include structuring and coordinating the campus strategic planning process and overseeing the plan’s yearly progress reporting. She also oversaw and supported UCI’s broad range of interdisciplinary academic initiatives and formulated and implemented campuswide coordination of community engagement, such as assisting in the launch of UCI Engage. Dr. Stepan-Norris has made significant contributions to inclusive excellence on campus by developing the Inclusive Excellence Accountability Report and other oversight mechanisms. During the past year, she helped the campus make strides toward building a strong foundation for improving student, faculty and staff wellness.

In addition, she has been acting dean of three health sciences units, participated as a leader in the formation of the Susan and Henry Samueli College of Health Sciences, co-chaired the Academic Planning Group, and chaired the Council on Enrollment and Student Success.

Over the years, she has served UCI in a range of academic and administrative positions, including chair of the Academic Senate, associate director of the Center for the Study of Democracy, chair of the sociology department and equity advisor in the School of Social Sciences. Dr. Stepan-Norris has had prominent roles with the American Sociological Association and other professional groups.

In the coming months, an assessment of the evolving academic needs of the campus will help determine next steps for the administration and leadership of the Office of Academic Planning.

Please join me in thanking Judy for her many contributions on behalf of our faculty, staff and students.


Enrique J. Lavernia, Ph.D.
Provost and Executive Vice Chancellor
Distinguished Professor, Department of Materials Science and Engineering