By David E. Early
SAN JOSE -- Following exhaustive consideration of more than 70 candidates nationwide, San Jose State University has reached inside its own management team to name Andy Hale Feinstein as the No. 2 campus leader who promises to be dedicated to making campus diversity issues a priority.
Hale, 46, will be provost and vice-president for academic affairs effective April 21, the school announced Tuesday. He comes with an unusual hospitality management academic background and has been deputy provost at San Jose State since July 2013. In January, Feinstein was named interim provost at the school of 30,000 that is roiled with racial conflict, protests and general unrest over issues involving the administration, faculty and students
In his lesser and temporary roles, a news release by University President Mohammad Qayoumi indicated that Feinstein had "focused on improving retention and graduation rates; addressing diversity and campus climate issues," among other duties.
Now, as permanent provost, Feinstein spoke about how his new role will help the troubled campus.
"I was a little off to the side as deputy and interim provost," said Feinstein, but he was involved in many discussions with former Provost Ellen Junn and others about the campus challenges. "Now, I will make it a priority to be involved in diversity-related issues. That is an important part of the fabric of San Jose State."
Feinstein said he is particularly interested in what comes out of the final meeting Thursday of the special task force looking at the social and racial climate on the 154-acre campus. A racial bullying case last fall -- which has become a $5 million claim filed against the school by the family of the freshman victim -- spurred protests, meetings, speeches, demands and overall discord at the school. Feinstein said he looks forward to carrying out suggestions in the task force's completed report. President Qayoumi is scheduled to speak at the final meeting.
Feinstein received his undergraduate and master's degrees in Hotel Administration from the University of Nevada -- Las Vegas, according to the San Jose State news release. His doctorate is from Pennsylvania State University, where he held an academic computing fellowship. His "areas of focus have included instructional systems, simulation modeling, and food service operations," according to the release. Feinstein co-wrote two hospitality purchasing textbooks, including one used at more than 250 colleges and universities worldwide.
In 2008, Feinstein was named the California State University's statewide director of Hospitality Management Education. Before coming to San Jose State, he was dean and James A. Collins Distinguished Chair of The Collins College of Hospitality Management at Cal Poly Pomona -- the largest hospitality program in California and ranked as one of the nation's best.
'Saw no future'
"While my true passion is hospitality management," Feinstein said "I have a strong background in research and budgeting on the academic and the industry side. My management style is all about consensus-building and bridging gaps and building relationships. I talk a lot, but I am also a very active listener. The way I lead will be of great benefit to the future of San Jose State."
Feinstein also said his hospitality background has taught him "there is no better way to build relationships than to break bread with someone." On campus, he often eats with students in dining halls and attends a different class each week, "to better understand faculty and students and their issues and challenges."
He loves to tell how, before pursuing his hospitality management degrees, he was deeply immersed in the booming internet business around 1995 — writing software programs and designing upscale websites for corporations.
"I had a software company in San Francisco when the boom was just getting off the ground," he said, chuckling, "but I gave all that up, because I saw no future in the Internet."
Contact David E. Early at 408-920-5836.
Born: Cleveland, Aug. 25, 1967
Raised: San Diego
Children: Rachel, 9, Nicholas, 13
Hobbies: body boarding; cycling