Leadership and Board of Trustees

Barry Ryan, Ph.D.

JD, Ph.D., President & CEO of Sofia 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 recently completed six years of service as a Commissioner on the WASC Senior College and University Commission.



  • 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.

Secretary to the Board of Trustees

Click to read more about Dr. Allan Cahoon, PhD

Ph.D., Syracuse University, Public Administration
MSc, Brigham Young University, International Administration
BA, Brigham Young University and University of Calgary, History and Political Science

2019 to present: University Professor, Royal Roads University, Victoria, BC
2007-2019 President and Vice-Chancellor, Royal Roads University, Victoria, BC
2006-2007 President (pro-tem) University of Regina, Regina, Saskatchewan
2002-2006 Vice-President (Research and International) University of Regina, Regina Saskatchewan

Previous Academic positions: Assistant Dean, Area Chair, Director of Research, , Professor, Faculty of Management, and President (Faculty Association) Director of International Business, University of Calgary, Calgary, Alberta

Visiting professorships; Simon Fraser University, Vancouver BC, University of Saskatchewan, Saskatoon, Saskatchewan, Syracuse University, Syracuse New York.

International Visiting Professorships: Monash University (Mt. Eliza), Australia
International Management Center (University of Central Europe), Budapest Hungary
Yamaguchi University, Japan

International Visiting Teacher/Supervisor: TEC Monterrey (ITESM), Mexico, Avans University of Applied Sciences (Netherlands), Shanghai Lida University (China), Hunan University (China), Nankai University (China), Tianjin Open University (China).

Research Interests- Leadership, Higher Education, Women Leading Change, International and Cross-cultural Development, Human Resources.

Volunteer Activities: President Inter-American Organization of Higher Education; President University Public Sector Employees Association; Saanich Advisory Committee on Planning, Economic Development and Sustainability, Advisory Council of the Order of B.C; member Saskatchewan Health Research Network, Universities Canada International Advisory Committee

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

• 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 the company level.
• 20 years of experience in the IT industry, including CYSCO, Juniper and Nortel.
• Active in educational circles in the Bay Area.