Woodley Headshot

Meet Dr. Woodley

Dr. Sandra Woodley began her tenure as the President of UT Permian Basin on July 1, 2017. She brings a unique perspective to the presidency as her journey is similar to that of many students at UTPB. She married soon after graduating high school, completing her education while also working full-time and raising her children. It would take a decade for her to become the first person in her family to earn a university degree. Beyond her strong experience in higher education leadership, she brings great insight and understanding of the challenges and opportunities facing students.

As your president, I am on a mission to equip our students, alumni, faculty, staff, and community with the tools they need to be successful. In our short 50 years of service we’ve been able to make a significant impact – and we’re just getting started!

Sandy Woodley
President, The University of Texas Permian Basin

Dr. Woodley serves in leadership roles with several key organizations that impact student success. She is vice-chair of the NCAA Executive Board, a member of the Lone Star Conference of Presidents council, and a member of the regional IDEA Charter Schools Advisory Board.

Prior to becoming president, Dr. Woodley served as the chief executive officer for the University of Louisiana System where she led one of the nation’s largest higher education systems, which serves 90,000 students at nine universities. She worked with the state’s governor and legislature, the system’s Board of Regents, as well as campus presidents and members of the public on matters of higher education policy.

Dr. Woodley has served in executive positions as vice president in charge of finance and strategic planning for higher educational systems in Alabama, Kentucky, and Arizona. She is no stranger to Texas. From 2010 to 2013, she served as the UT System’s vice chancellor for strategic initiatives, where she led long-term strategic planning, policy research, and accountability efforts. Woodley worked directly with senior-level academic and professional teams and faculty to develop policies, initiatives, and analytics related to the strategic vision of the System, especially those related to improving graduation rates, degree production, and student affordability.

Dr. Woodley has also been a leader at the national level. She was on the board of directors and served as senior strategic advisor for the National Association of System Heads (NASH), served as senior fellow for the American Association of State Colleges and Universities (AASCU), and served on the Southern Regional Education Board (SREB). Her statewide affiliations in Louisiana included the Workforce and Innovation for a Stronger Economy (WISE) Council, the Louisiana Innovation Council, and the business roundtable - Committee of 100.

A graduate of Auburn University, Dr. Woodley earned both a bachelor’s and master’s degree in business administration, where she majored in finance and economics. She also holds a Doctor of Business Administration (DBA) degree in management from Nova Southeastern University.

She is a native of Weaver, Alabama, and is married to Stan Woodley. Her family includes three grown children, three grandchildren, and two German Shepherds: Jett and Luna.

Fun Facts About Dr. Woodley

Lightning round:  
  • Favorite book –Prince of Tides, Pat Convoy (and every biography I can find)
  • Favorite movie –The Christmas Story (you’ll shoot your eye out!) We watch it every Christmas Eve as a family
  • Favorite music—Country Music and R&B 
  • Favorite food – Mexican (hot spicy food is the best)

When you aren’t busy as President, what can we catch you doing? 
I love to take my German Shepherd out on a run or walk on the golf course—early mornings are my time to exercise and get outside for fresh air. I also love to read, especially biographies about complex and interesting people.

What advice would you give your college self? 
You can do it! All of the sleepless nights and hard work will be worth it.

What do you value most about UT Permian Basin?  
The Permian Basin is a warm and generous and happy community. The people are its biggest asset. I also enjoy the beautiful wide-open spaces and the spectacular sunrises and sunsets.   The Permian Basin has become my favorite of all of the places I have lived. 

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