Dr. George Anthony “Tony” Peffer began his role as provost and vice president for academic and student affairs at Bemidji State University on July 3, 2017.
Peffer joined Bemidji State from Castleton University in Vermont, where in 2007 he began serving in progressively responsible roles, including associate academic dean, dean of undergraduate studies, chief academic officer and special assistant to the president. Previous to his work at Castleton, he held a variety of teaching and administrative positions at Ohio University Eastern, Lakeland University (Wisc.), Big Sandy Community and Technical College (Ky.), and Cleveland State University.
A historian specializing in Asian American Studies, Peffer is the author of “If They Don’t Bring Their Women Here: Chinese Female Immigration before Exclusion” (University of Illinois Press, 1999), and he edited the Journal of Asian American Studies from 2002 to 2009. In recognition of his scholarly achievements and teaching excellence in the liberal arts, the University of Chicago awarded him its Robert Redfield Professorship for the 2003-04 academic year, assigning him to the Center for the Study of Race, Politics and Culture. Since turning to full-time administration, Peffer’s academic efforts have focused on assessment of student learning and institutional success. As part of that work, in early 2017 he completed a five-year term as editor of the Journal of Assessment and Institutional Effectiveness.
“Dr. Peffer is an experienced leader who values relationships,” President Faith Hensrud said. “He has extensive program planning and accreditation experience, he values collaboration and he has experience recruiting international students and faculty.”
Peffer holds a Bachelor of Arts in History from Morehead (Ky.) State University; a Master of Divinity from Golden Gate Baptist Theological Seminary in Mill Valley, Calif.; a Master of Arts in History from San Francisco State University; and a Doctor of Arts in History from Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh, Pa.
He and his wife, Myra, have one child (their daughter, Charity) and two grandchildren: grandson, Cian, and granddaughter, Freya