After completing a nationwide executive search and interviewing multiple qualified candidates, the Bastyr University Board of Trustees have chosen Dr. Devin Byrd as the sixth president of Bastyr University. He comes to Bastyr having recently served as Vice President of Academic Affairs and Chief Academic Advisor at Saybrook University in Pasadena, CA. Dr. Byrd will assume the post of president on July 26, succeeding Harlan Patterson who has been president since 2017.

Over several months, the Bastyr University Board of Trustees completed a nationwide executive search and interviewed an extensive list of candidates. The goal was to find a candidate with strong experience in strategy, academia and diversity. “We are confident that Dr. Byrd will propel our organization forward in new ways as we continue to excel and grow in our near post-pandemic world,” said Carol Taylor, the Chair of Bastyr University Board of Trustees.

“It is a privilege and an honor to have been selected to lead an institution that is an innovator in the field of natural health,” said Dr. Byrd. “Having an opportunity to become part of a rich and science-based environment at such a pivotal time in academia is very exciting. Initially, I plan to focus on learning more about our university while understanding how I can effectively engage and support the members of our community. My commitment to fulfilling the university’s mission is rooted in addressing the challenges and opportunities within the natural health landscape.”    

Career achievements include: 

  • Partnering with program faculty, staff and administration across the university to successfully achieve accreditation for every program capable of pursuing accreditation  
  • Assisting faculty and academic supervisors in achieving their professional and programmatic goals by providing support, guidance and mentorship  
  • Achieving the development and launch of new programs on multiple campuses and online division 
  • Successfully leading an institution through the strategic planning process including students, staff, faculty, alumni and board of trustees members 

Read Dr. Byrd’s full bio here.

From the presidential search committee:

“Dr. Byrd’s extensive experience developing and overseeing in-person, online and hybrid educational program offerings puts him in an excellent position to help Bastyr University to improve and evolve program offerings and to grow student enrollment.  The range of health-related programs that he has worked with is impressive and gives him a broad perspective on how to best meet the needs of students interested in receiving training in various health professions.  He is strongly committed to shared governance, to seeking and listening to faculty and staff input and to continuing efforts to address diversity, equity and inclusion issues.”

Gary Quarfoth 

Vice Chair, Board of Trustees 

Chair, President Search Committee 

“Bastyr is known as an international leader in developing science-based, natural medicine professionals, and Dr. Devin Byrd is perfectly positioned to lead the university through the consumer driven healthcare revolution occurring within the medical industry. Dr. Byrd has the academic and leadership skills the university needs to succeed in continuing to deliver an extraordinary education and leveraging the opportunity Bastyr graduates have to integrate natural medicine into the new value-based healthcare delivery system.” 

Deb Hubers 

Bastyr University Board of Trustees 

“Dr. Devin Byrd’s extensive experience in higher education leadership, his creative and strategic thinking and action, and collaborative leadership style make him the ideal president for Bastyr University. We are fortunate to have Dr. Byrd’s leadership and experience at the university at this time of great opportunity and change in the growing field of the natural health arts and sciences.”

David Lang 

Secretary/Treasurer, Board of Trustees 

“I am delighted that Dr. Byrd has decided to join Bastyr University as our next president and I look forward to serving with him in advancing the mission and vision of the University. His clear student-centered approach to problem solving, passion for integrative approaches to health, and experiences with online education make him an ideal choice. I am certain that under his leadership Bastyr’s next chapter will be one of innovation and growth. Welcome, President Byrd!” 

Dave Rule 

Senior Vice President and Provost 

“Dr. Byrd is an excellent fit to be the next leader of Bastyr University. Bastyr is already well positioned for growth in the changing world of health and education and Dr. Byrd’s experience at his former institutions has provided him with the precise experience needed guide Bastyr into a successful future. He has fantastic vision and the ability to successfully make this vision a reality.”    

Lela Altman, ND, LAc  

Bastyr University Board Member and Core Faculty

Member of the President Search Committee  

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