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February 22, 2024

Dr. Christina A. Clark Named La Roche University’s Eighth President

Dr. Christian Clark - La Roche University

PITTSBURGH, Feb. 22, 2024 -Christina A. Clark, Ph.D., former provost at Marywood University in Scranton, Pennsylvania, has been named the eighth president of La Roche University. Dr. Clark has worked for more than 20 years at Catholic comprehensive universities. She is the second lay president in La Roche’s 61-year history.

“What set Dr. Christina Clark apart as a candidate was her belief that the skills, cognitive capacities and values developed in a La Roche education are critical for thriving and solving complex problems in a rapidly changing world and workforce,” said Dione Graswick ’93, chair of La Roche’s Board of Trustees. “She understands our challenges and is excited by the opportunities ahead. I am thrilled to welcome Dr. Clark to her new home in Pittsburgh as the eighth president of La Roche University.” 

Dr. Clark will take office July 1 from Provost Dr. Howard Ishiyama, who served as interim president since Sister Candace Introcaso, CDP, Ph.D., entered eternal life May 22, 2023. President Introcaso served as the University’s seventh president for nearly two decades.  

“The Sisters of Divine Providence are delighted with the choice of Dr. Christina Clark as the eighth president of La Roche University. We have every confidence that Dr. Clark will carry forward the legacy of Sister Candace and the mission of the Sisters of Divine Providence. We wish her an abundance of blessings,” said Sister Michele Bisbey, CDP ’71, Ph.D., University trustee and provincial for the Sisters of Divine Providence, the founders and sponsors of La Roche. 

Bishop David Zubik, Diocese of Pittsburgh, noted, “Upon meeting Dr. Clark, one immediately appreciates her skills as an accomplished academician, and I am encouraged that as a woman of faith, she will advance the Catholic mission of La Roche University with and for the students, faculty, staff, alumni, board of trustees and benefactors of La Roche.”

Trustees unanimously selected Dr. Clark after a six-month search process led by a committee comprising University trustees, administrators, faculty, staff, students and alumni. The committee was chaired by Lyle Albaugh, vice chair of La Roche’s Board of Trustees. 

“I am grateful for the opportunity I have been given to join the La Roche University community,” Dr. Clark said. “I admire La Roche’s commitment to empowering students in an inclusive campus environment fostering global citizenship and creating a community of scholars infused with the core values of the Sisters of Divine Providence. It is a privilege to join the La Roche community in the collaborative work that will continue to transform students’ lives and situate the University as an integral partner for businesses and nonprofits in the region and beyond.”  

As provost at Marywood, Dr. Clark led a team of administrators, faculty and staff in delivering the university’s mission by offering high-quality academic programs, fostering student success, and promoting a culture of innovation to meet the current needs and challenges. She worked alongside Marywood’s president and her Cabinet colleagues to ensure the university’s strategic growth and financial stability. 

Prior to her appointment as provost at Marywood, Dr. Clark served as dean of the School of Design, Arts and Humanities at Marymount University, a Catholic Hispanic-serving institution in Virginia, where she also was a tenured professor of literature and languages. She also held various academic roles at Creighton University in Nebraska from 2001 to 2016.   

Dr. Clark’s academic administration skills include strategic planning, program assessment, recruitment and retention, curricular development, shared governance, university advancement, partnership development and grant writing, among other issues of critical focus in higher education. 

A key institutional leader throughout the pandemic, Dr. Clark led the successful implementation of the HyBridge Education Model at Marywood, which led to 87 percent retention for undergraduate degree-seeking students and 81.4 percent retention for graduate degree-seeking students from Spring 2020 to Spring 2021. 

She oversaw the development of new degree programs in construction management, environmental studies and counseling psychology at Marywood, and programs in digital writing and narrative design, pre-art therapy and arts management at Marymount. 

A consistent voice for diversity, equity and inclusion, Dr. Clark led the initiative at Marywood to diversify curricula and develop new programs such as an interdisciplinary Black Studies minor and a workforce diversity, equity and inclusion certificate. She also increased the numbers of faculty and staff from underrepresented populations at both Marywood and Marymount. 

“Like the La Roche community, I believe that diversity, equity and inclusion are core to holistic education and academic and institutional excellence,” Dr. Clark said. “A diverse, equitable and inclusive community shows tangibly that we authentically live our values and also allows our students to see in practice what research has proven: diverse groups are more innovative.” 

Dr. Clark was responsible for many cross-divisional institutional priorities at Marywood and Marymount, including leading the development and implementation of strategic plans at both institutions. 

She also provided leadership for sponsored programs and grants, which included funding from the National Science Foundation. 

Dr. Clark earned master’s and doctoral degrees in classics from the University of Wisconsin-Madison and a bachelor’s degree in classics from Georgetown University. During her undergraduate education, she spent her junior year abroad at Trinity College in Dublin, Ireland. 

Dr. Clark began her teaching career in graduate school. After earning her doctorate, she held several visiting faculty positions before settling in Omaha, Nebraska with a tenure-track position at Creighton University. She also served as associate professor at the Intercollegiate Center for Classical Studies in Rome in 2011-2012. 

As a scholar, Dr. Clark focuses on the representation of gender and nonverbal behavior in ancient Greek and Roman poetry. Her professional contributions and research include peer-reviewed books, book chapters, articles, papers and reviews. 

Dr. Clark grew up in a military family and has lived in many multicultural communities throughout the U.S. as well as the Philippines. She and her husband, Gregory Bucher, will move to Pittsburgh from Alexandria, Virginia. Having studied classics at Brown University, Dr. Bucher currently teaches at the University of Maryland after having spent much of his career in Rome, studying and working at the American Academy and the Intercollegiate Center for Classical Studies. Their daughter Genevieve is a graduate of the University of Edinburgh (UK) and currently lives in that city.


About La Roche University: A private liberal arts university in the North Hills of Pittsburgh, La Roche University offers 68 undergraduate programs of study, seven master’s degrees and two doctoral degrees, with particular strengths in education, business, criminal justice, psychology, nursing, and health and medical sciences as well as interior architecture & design and graphic design. This residential university provides a vibrant campus community for women and men enjoying 30-plus student organizations and an exciting NCAA Div. III athletics program. Founded by the Sisters of Divine Providence in 1963, La Roche University embraces its Catholic heritage while welcoming people of all faiths and backgrounds. With a legacy of social justice and a commitment to international exchange, La Roche University educates students to be lifelong learners and achievers in an increasingly diverse and global society.