Leadership and Board of Trustees

Barry Ryan, Ph.D.

JD, Ph.D., President & CEO of Sofa University
"If you would like to study at the university in the heart of the city that focuses on changing the world for a better tomorrow, you’re choosing the right place. We do not use special formulas to select students. We look at every single applicant’s application, academic and personal, to select students who suit our community. "

University Leadership

Dr. Barry Ryan is an academic leader whose career has been split evenly between serving 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.




  • 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).

Board of Trustees

"Leadership is not a position or a title, it is action, and example."

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 the 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 the Academic & Student Service Committee.



Allen Huang, Ph.D.

Chairman of the Board

Click to read more about Dr. Allen Huang, PhD

Ph.D., University of Alabama, Education
MA, Eastern Kentucky University, Special Education
BA, National Chenchi University

2007-2009: President, University of the West.
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.
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, China.

Martin E. Dresner, Ph.D.

Vice Chairman of the Board

Click to read more about Martin E. Dresner, PhD

Ph.D., University of British Columbia, Faculty of Commerce and Business Administration (Policy Analysis). Dissertation: The International Regulation of Air Transport: Changing Regimes and Price Effects
MBA, York University
B.Comm, University of Toronto

2003-present: Professor of Logistics, Business and Public Policy, Robert H. Smith School of Business, University of Maryland.
1995-2003: Associate Professor of Logistics, Business and Public Policy, Robert H. Smith School of Business, University of Maryland.
1998, August: Visiting Professor, University of Bremen, Germany.
1996, January-March: Visiting Scholar, University of British Columbia, Canada.
1989-1995: Assistant Professor of Logistics, Business and Public Policy, Robert H. Smith School of Business, University of Maryland.
1988-1989: Instructor of Transportation, Business and Public Policy, Robert H. Smith School of Business, University of Maryland.
1983-1988: Teaching Assistant and Research Assistant, University of British Columbia, Canada.
1980-1983: Commercial Credit Officer, Toronto Dominion Bank, Canada.
Research Interests:
Research has focused on public policy and strategy issues concerning international and domestic transportation and logistics.

Allan Cahoon, Ph.D.

Professor at the University of Saskatchewan

Click to read more about Dr. Allan Cahoon, PhD

Ph.D., Syracuse University, Canada
MSc, Syracuse University, International Administration, Canada
BA, Syracuse University, History and Political Science, Canada

Professor of Political Science, University of Saskatchewan, Canada.
Professor at the Faculty of Management, University of Calgary, Canada.
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, Canada.
2002-2007: Vice President, Research and International and Interim President, University of Regina, Canada.
1996-1998:Director of International Business Division, University of Calgary, Canada.
1994-1996: Director of Research, Faculty of Management, University of Calgary, Canada.
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, Canada.
Adjunct Professor at the Tianjin Open, Hunan University and Nankai Universities in China.
Emeritus Professor at the University of Calgary, Canada.

Shuye Huan

Higher Education Counsel

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B.S, Law School, Peking University

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, China.
Designed, marketed and executed over 30 special education programs for the EMBA classes at Peking University, Tsinghua University, China Europe International Business School, and the Mayors’ Courses for Guangdong Provincial Government, China.

Eugene Zhang

General Partner & Co-Founder of TEEC Angel Fund

Click to read more about Eugene Zhang

M.S.C.E., Syracuse University
M.S.E.E. and B.S.E.E., Tsinghua University

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 has had 10 successful exits, 3 unicorns and 7 centaurs, and is one of the top-performing early stage funds.
Founding CEO of InnoSpring, a global cross-border technology startup incubator in Silicon Valley.
Founder, President and CEO of JEDA Technologies, Inc. JEDA opened its Beijing R&D Center at Tsinghua Science Park in 2004.
Served on multiple boards including the Board of Tsinghua Entrepreneur & Executive Club (TEEC), and the Board of Northern-America Chinese Semiconductor Association.
2007-2009: President of the TEEC Board.

Ming Zhou, Ph.D.

Professor, San Jose State University

Click to read more about Ming Zhou, PhD

Ph.D. University of Maryland: Major-Supply Chain Management, Minor- Information Systems. Dissertation-The Effectiveness of Seller Credibility Systems in the Online Auction Market: Modeling the Seller’s Point of View.

Academic Experience
2016-present: Professor of Operations and Supply Chain Management, College of Business, San Jose State University.
2013-present: Assistant Director, Silicon Valley Center of Operations and Technology Management.
2012-2016: Associate Professor of Operations and Supply Chain Management, College of Business, San Jose State University.
2006- 2012: Assistant Professor of Operations and Supply Chain Management, College of Business, San Jose State University.

Business Experience
2016-present: CEO and Co-founder, Beyond Education Consulting (BEEC), CA.
2015-present: Managing Partner, Opes Acquisitions, CA.
2015-present: Venture Partner, SinoKing Capital, China.
2014-2015: Co-founder, LinkTime Corp, CA.
2009-2016: CEO and Founder, Meliora Consulting & Services Inc., CA.

Ms. Fu Lei

Technical Lead, CISCO Systems

Click to read more about Ms. Fu Lei

Fu Lei
Technical Lead, CISCO Systems


• Master’s Degree, Calgary University
• Bachelor’s Degree, Tsinghua University


• 2006-present: Technical Lead at Cisco Systems, working for different business groups. As a Technical Lead, she manages her group, co-ordinates between different departments and participates in important decision-making at company level.
• 20 years of experience in the IT industry, including CYSCO, Juniper and Nortel.
• Active in educational circles in the Bay Area.