CSU, Chico

Meet the Dean

Meet the Dean

John Unruh, DeanGreetings from the CSU, Chico College of Agriculture! I’m in my first semester as the dean of this wonderful college, and I’m looking forward to getting to know our students, alumni, and the California agriculture community.

My wife Judy and I moved to Chico from Manhattan, Kansas, where I served as chair of the Undergraduate Food Science program at Kansas State University. I am originally from Eastern Washington, and Judy is from Idaho, so it has always been our goal to someday make it back to the West Coast. 

I first learned of Chico State as a junior high student showing my steer at livestock shows in the Pacific Northwest. Over the years, through livestock judging competitions, talking with Chico State students and parents, and professional interactions with various faculty, I have developed an admiration for the College of Agriculture’s focus on student success and experiential education, which mirrors my own philosophy on education.

What I’m finding in my first few weeks on the job echoes what I saw here when I interviewed last fall: a deeply committed group of faculty and staff; talented, hard-working, and enthusiastic students; and a collective focus on student success that guides everything we do. Judy and I have already felt so welcome in this community, and when I wear my College of Agriculture hat around town, people approach me to talk about how much they appreciate the University Farm. It is clear to me that the Farm and the College of Agriculture are cherished assets within the Chico community.

I truly believe that CSU, Chico is one of the gems of the nation’s agricultural education network, and together we can build upon its rich history of excellence in experiential learning and student success to have a transformational impact on agriculture within California and beyond. Please feel free to contact me if you have questions, feedback, or suggestions for the College of Agriculture. 

John A. Unruh, PhD