John Hoffman Named President of Bemidji State University and Northwest Technical College

Posted: March 16, 2022

Contact: Doug Anderson,, 651-201-1426

ST. PAUL, Minn., March 16, 2022 – The Board of Trustees of the Minnesota State Colleges and Universities has named John Hoffman to serve as president of Bemidji State University and Northwest Technical College. The appointment will become effective on July 1, 2022.


“Dr. Hoffman is an accomplished and strategic leader, who understands that building an empowering ethos for faculty and staff is critical to take both institutions to the next level,” said Devinder Malhotra, chancellor of Minnesota State. “Personally and professionally, Dr. Hoffman is strongly committed to diversity, equity, and inclusion, and fully understands Equity 2030 as a unifying framework and organizing principal of student success. He exhibits through his work great leadership traits and has prepared himself well through both experience and expertise to assume the presidency of Bemidji State University and Northwest Technical College.”

Dr. Hoffman has served as the vice chancellor for academic and student affairs at the University of Minnesota Crookston since 2018, and he also assumed duties as acting senior vice chancellor in 2021. His responsibilities have spanned all of academics, student affairs, and enrollment management. Signature accomplishments have included implementing multi-faceted student success programs credited with increasing student success and retention rates, reducing the first-year retention rate disparities between Black and Indigenous students, and students of color and their white counterparts, and increasing performance on two-thirds of core learning outcomes for all students during their first year of college. Other accomplishments include overhauling enrollment management functions which, pre-COVID, increased new student enrollment, increased yield, reduced summer melt, and increased proportions of students of color, low-income students, and first-generation students. This past year, he co-authored the University of Minnesota system-wide strategic enrollment management plan. He also led UMN Crookston aspects of system-wide plans addressing COVID-19 response and related educational initiatives.

Previously, he held faculty and a variety of administrative positions within the California State University between 2004 and 2018 including chair of the Department of Educational Leadership and director of the Doctor of Educational Leadership Program. Over 10 years at Cal State Fullerton, he earned tenure and advancement to full professor, and his leadership contributed to significant diversification of the faculty, significant enrollment growth including increases in the racial and ethnic diversity of students, and enhanced graduation rates with no measurable achievement gaps by race or gender.

Prior appointments include service as dean of students at Concordia University, Irvine from 1998 to 2004, multiple student affairs roles at Concordia University, St. Paul from 1995 to 1998, and a year of service as a major gifts officer at Concordia University, Nebraska from 1994 to 1995. He holds a bachelor’s degree from Concordia University, Nebraska, and a master’s and a doctorate from the University of Minnesota.

Hoffman succeeds Faith Hensrud who has served as president since 2016 and has announced her intention to retire.

About Bemidji State University and Northwest Technical College

BSU and NTC are the premier higher education destinations in Minnesota's north woods. The unique alignment of a four-year university and a two-year technical college, independently accredited institutions served by a single president and shared student and administrative services, creates unmatched opportunity for students and employers in the region and beyond. Nearly 6,000 students pursue higher education at all levels, from a two-year college certificate to a master's degree, in more than 40 certificate, diploma and two-year degree programs, more than 70 four-year undergraduate programs and nine graduate programs. To learn more, visit or


Minnesota State includes 30 community and technical colleges and seven state universities serving approximately 340,000 students. It is the third-largest system of two-year colleges and four-year universities in the United States.