University Leadership


Dr. Barry Ryan, JD, PhD

President and CEO

  • University of Oxford, Diploma in Global Business, Said School of Business
  • University of California, Berkeley – School of Law, J.D.
  • University of California Santa Barbara, PhD., European Intellectual History (With Distinction)
  • University of London and Oxford University, Visiting Researcher
  • Fuller Seminary, Pasadena, M.Div.
  • Westmont College, Santa Barbara, BA (magna cum laude)
  • Commissioner – WASC Senior College and University Commission
  • Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs, International Technological University
  • President and CEO, United States University
  • Chancellor, Argosy University
  • President/CEO – West Coast University
  • President, Southern California campuses, Argosy University
  • Vice President for Academic Affairs, Regent University
  • Professor of History
  • Professor of Law
  • Judicial Fellow for the Chief Justice, Supreme Court of the United States
  • Chair, Foundation Board, Children’s Hospital of Orange County (CHOC)


Dr. Barry Ryan is an academic leader whose career has been split evenly between service as a faculty member and as an administrator. The recipient of numerous teaching awards, he has taught over 10,000 undergraduate and graduate students in state university, law school, and private university contexts. While doing so, he was tenured in two different disciplines, served as a department chair, and a founding director of a center for teaching and learning.

In terms of administration, Dr. Ryan served as a dean, vice president, and president in institutions on both coasts. A former international student himself, he developed, led, and taught in a number of programs in Europe and Latin America.

Dr. Ryan has also had significant experience in the field of law. He was a litigation associate in a large San Francisco law firm, while continuing to teach law. Later, he took a brief hiatus from university life to serve as the Judicial Fellow at the Supreme Court of the United States, in the chambers of former Chief Justice William H. Rehnquist.

A first generation college student, he earned a BA in History (magna cum laude) from Westmont College in Santa Barbara, followed by an M.Div. from Fuller Seminary in Pasadena. While there, he was encouraged to pursue doctoral studies, which he did at the University of California, Santa Barbara. He earned his Ph.D. “with distinction.”

As part of his research program, he received support as a University of California Regents Scholar for his work at the University of London and Oxford. Later, he earned a J.D. from Boalt Hall School of Law at the University of California, Berkeley.

Most recently, he earned a Dip.GB (Global Business) and focused on international education at the Said School of Business, Oxford University.

As part of a long commitment to excellence in health care, particularly in pediatrics, Dr. Ryan served as chair of the Foundation Board of CHOC Children’s Hospital of Orange County for six years, and is active in various other charitable causes. He is completing his fifth year of service as a Commissioner on the WASC Senior College and University Commission, and is a member of the Executive Committee.

Board of Trustees

“Leadership is not a position or a title, it is action and example.” - Unknown

The Board of Trustees of Sofia University is the corporate body established by the charter with complete responsibility for the government and welfare of the University and all the interests pertaining thereto including students, faculty, staff and alumni.


In the exercise of this responsibility, the Board is guided by both WASC and ABG and the following policies:

The Board of Trustees shall carry out certain responsibilities as a Board, without delegation. These responsibilities are, in short,:

  • The selection of the President of the University
  • The determination of the major goals of the University and the approval of the policies and procedures for implementation of such goals.
  • The review and approval of the operating and capital budget of the University.
  • Such other responsibilities as law, governmental directives, or custom require the Board to act upon.


The board consists of 9 voting members: 5 independents and 4 affiliates. In addition to the voting board members, there are non-voting members from staff, faculty and deans. There are multiple committees including the Financial Plan Committee, Audit Committee, Executive Committee and Academic & Student Service Committee.

Chairman of the Board – Dr. Allen Huang, Ph.D.

  • Ph.D., University of Alabama, Education
  • MA, Eastern Kentucky University, Special Education
  • BA, National Chenchi University
  • 2007-2009 – President, University of the West, CA
  • 2003-2007 – Provost and Senior VP for Academic Affairs, University of Northern Colorado (UNC)
  • 1999-2003 – Associate VP for Research and Dean of Graduate School, UNC
  • 1997-1999 – Dean, College of Education, UNC
  • 1995-2007 – Executive Director, Bresnahan and Halstead Endowment, UNC
  • 1978-2007 – Assistant, Associate, Chair and Professor of Special Education Division, UNC
  • 1972-1975 – Head Teacher, Madison County School of Hope, KY
  • 1966-1970 – Teacher, Taipei Kuting Jr. Highschool
  • 2009-present – President of Global Higher Education Consulting Group. In this position Dr. Huang supports innovative multicultural education ventures for clients, including Beifang Education Group, China
  • 2011-present – Advisor, Beifang Group

Vice Chairman of the Board – Martin E. Dresner, Ph.D.

  • B.Comm, University of Toronto, 1979, majored in Commerce and Finance.
  • MBA, York University, Toronto, Ontario, 1980.
  • Ph.D., University of British Columbia, Vancouver, B.C., 1989, Faculty of Commerce and Business Administration (Policy Analysis). Ph.D. Dissertation: The International Regulation of Air Transport: Changing Regimes and Price Effects.
  • Professor of Logistics, Business and Public Policy, Robert H. Smith School of Business, University of Maryland, August 2003 to present.
  • Associate Professor of Logistics, Business and Public Policy, Robert H. Smith School of Business, University of Maryland, August 1995 to 2003.
  • Visiting Professor, University of Bremen, June, 1998
  • Visiting Scholar, University of British Columbia, January-March 1996.
  • Assistant Professor of Logistics, Business and Public Policy, Robert H. Smith School of Business, University of Maryland, August 1989 to August 1995.
  • Instructor of Transportation, Business and Public Policy, Robert H. Smith School of Business, University of Maryland, August 1988 to July 1989.
  • Teaching Assistant and Research Assistant, University of British Columbia, September 1983 to April 1988.
  • Commercial Credit Officer, Toronto Dominion Bank, Toronto, Ontario, September 1980 to July 1983.
  • Research has focused on public policy and strategy issues concerning international and domestic transportation and logistics.

Secretary of the Board – Sheng (Victor) Dong

“Find potential value and get things done”
  • MS in Computer Engineering, Syracuse University, USA
  • BS in Electrical Engineering, Huazhong University, China
  • Mr. Dong has run Happy Ocean, LLC as a CEO and Founder since 2010 and grew the company from scratch to a successful Real Estate development company.
  • Sheng (aka Victor) Dong received his master degree in Computer Engineering from Syracuse University in 1994. He had been working as staff engineer in Sony Corporation for past 18 years (till May 2015) and he holds several US patents under his name. He is also a very senior Real Estate Management actively working in San Francisco and Bay area. He recognized business opportunity in real estate investment, formed a team of investors, contractors and realtors, his real estate renovations not only impress buyers with their beauties but also generate very high annual revenue for years and great returns for investors.
What about Sofia University inspired you to become a board of trustee?
  • “The high spiritual value that benefits all levels of people on transpersonal psychology globally and a potential of becoming a great university in the heart of Silicon Valley.”

Dr. Allan Cahoon, Ph.D.

  • Ph.D., Syracuse University
  • MSc, Syracuse University, International Administration
  • BA, Syracuse University, History and Political Science
  • Professor of Political Science, University of Saskatchewan
  • Professor at the Faculty of Management, University of Calgary
  • Assistant dean and Chair on the Management of Organizations and Human Resources departments, President of the Faculty Association –during this time he specialized in executive development, organizational theory and building best-practice, high-performing teams. He also conducted a longitudinal research project on the experience of women and men in organizations, University of Calgary
  • 2002-2007: Vice President, Research and International and interim President, University of Regina
  • 1996-1998 – Director of International Business Division, University of Calgary
  • 1994-1996 – Director of Research, Faculty of Management, University of Calgary
  • 2007-present: President and Vice Chancellor, Royal Roads University Dr. Cahoon served on the campaign cabinet of the United Way Victoria, the advisory council of the Order of B.C., and as President of University Public Sector Employers’ Association. He is currently a member of the Research Universities Council of B.C. and Universities Canada.
  • Dr. Cahoon was elected Vice-President (Canada) for the Inter-American Organization for Higher Education and was appointed president in 2014
  • Member of the Standing Advisory Committee on International Relations for Universities Canada
  • Dr. Cahoon has been a visiting professor at the National Autonomous University of Mexico, the Monash Mount Eliza Management School in Australia, the Yamaguchi University in Japan and the International Management Center in Budapest, Hungary
  • Dr. Cahoon has held teaching appointments at Simon Fraser University and Syracuse University
  • Adjunct professor at the Tianjin Open, Hunan University and Nankai Universities in China
  • Emeritus professor at the University of Calgary.

Robert Hu

  • Master’s degree from China Science Academy
  • Robert Hu has been ASIC architect and tech leader at Apple Inc. for the last seven years. Under his leadership, his team defined and designed multiple iPhone / iPad generations SOC ASIC.
  • Robert came to Apple with more than 20 years of experience. Prior to Apple, Robert was a director of Cable/Satellite receiver SOC ASIC at Montage Technology Corp., which went IPO in 2013. Earlier, He led ASIC design as a director of Chinese Terrastal Digital TV modulation standard at Legend Silicon Corp., and as a Sr. Manager at Sigma Designs, Inc. Robert also founded ActiveDesigns Corp. that was acquired by Sigma Designs after 15 months of inception.
  • Robert Hu holds several patents.

Shuye Huan

Higher Education Counsel
  • B.S, Law School, Peking University, 1984
  • Nearly 30 years of higher education administration experience.
  • 2010-2017: Director of China Affairs, Stanford Center for International Development.
  • 1990-2009: Administrator for Medical School, School of Engineering, and Dean of Research at Stanford University.
  • 1984-1989: Legal Counsel, Xinhua News Agency, Beijing.
  • Had designed, marketed and executed over 30 special education programs for the EMBA classes of Peking University, Tsinghua University, China Europe International Business School, and the Mayors’ Courses for Guangdong Provincial Government.

Fu Lei

  • Bachelor’s Degree, Tsinghua University, 1991
  • Master’s Degree, Calgary University, 2000
  • Fu Lei has been Technical Lead at Cisco Systems, working for different business groups since 2006. As a Technical Lead, she has to manage her group, co-ordinate between different departments and participate in important decision-making at the company level.
  • Fu Lei has almost 20 years of experience in the IT industry. Prior to Cisco, she worked at major IT companies including Juniper and Nortel.
  • Over the last decade, Fu Lei has been very active in the educational circles in the Bay Area.

Eugene Zhang

  • M.S.C.E., Syracuse University
  • M.S.E.E. and B.S.E.E., Tsinghua University
  • Eugene Zhang is the General Partner and co-founder of TEEC Angel Fund (TAF), one of the most successful super angel funds in the Bay Area. Over the past 7 years, TAF had 10 successful exits, 3 unicorns and 7 centaurs, and is one of the top-performing early stage funds.
  • Before TAF, Eugene was the founding CEO of InnoSpring, a global cross-border technology startup incubator in Silicon Valley, and founder President and CEO of JEDA Technologies, Inc. JEDA opened its Beijing R&D Center at Tsinghua Science Park in 2004.
  • Eugene has served on multiple boards including the Board of Tsinghua Entrepreneur & Executive Club (TEEC), and the Board of Northern-America Chinese Semiconductor Association. Between 2007 and 2009, he was the President of the Board of TEEC.

Ming Zhou, Ph.D.

Ph.D. (2004) University of Maryland – College Park, MD
  • Major Field: Supply Chain Management
  • Minor Field: Information Systems
  • Dissertation: The Effectiveness of Seller Credibility Systems in the Online Auction Market: Modeling the Seller’s Point of View
  • Chairs: Dr. Martin Dresner and Dr. Robert Windle
  • Committee members: Dr. Philips Evers, Dr. Thomas Corsi, Dr. Gang-len Chang
  • August 2016 – Present Professor of Operations and Supply Chain Management College of Business San Jose State University
  • August 2013 – Present Assistant Director, Silicon Valley Center of Operations and Technology Management
  • August 2012 – July 2016 Associate Professor of Operations and Supply Chain Management College of Business San Jose State University
  • August 2006 – July 2012 Assistant Professor of Operations and Supply Chain Management College of Business
  • 03 2016 – Present, CEO and co-founder, Beyond Education Consulting (BEEC), Danville, CA
  • 06 2015 – Present, Managing Partner, Opes Acquisitions, Los Gatos, CA
  • 09 2015 – Present, Venture Partner, SinoKing Capital, Beijing, China
  • 09 2014 – 06 2015, Co-founder, LinkTime Corp, San Jose, CA
  • 03 2009 – 03 2016, CEO and founder, Meliora Consulting & Services Inc., Dublin, CA