About PLU

University Officers


Thomas W. Krise, Ph.D.

Dr. Thomas W. Krise has been President of Pacific Lutheran University in Tacoma, Washington, since June 2012. Previously, he was Dean of the College at the University of the Pacific in Stockton, California; and Chair of the Department of English at the University of Central Florida in Orlando.  He also served 22 years in the U.S. Air Force, retiring with the rank of Lieutenant Colonel.  He was founding Director of the Air Force Humanities Institute at the U.S. Air Force Academy in Colorado Springs; Senior Fellow of the Institute for National Strategic Studies in Washington, D.C., and Vice Director of the National Defense University Press.

Thomas Krise President

A member of Phi Beta Kappa, Dr. Krise earned a B.S. in history from the Air Force Academy, an M.S. in administration from Central Michigan University, an M.A. in English from the University of Minnesota, and a Ph.D. in English from the University of Chicago. A former Fulbright Scholar at the University of the West Indies in Jamaica, his academic interests focus on early Caribbean studies, and he holds a full professorship with tenure in the Department of English at PLU. A member of the Pacific Council on International Policy, he has worked and lectured on six continents.

Provost & Senior Vice President Academic Affairs

Rae Linda Brown, Ph.D.

Rae Linda Brown, Ph.D., has joined Pacific Lutheran University as provost and senior vice president for academic affairs. Brown comes to PLU from Loyola Marymount University (LMU) in Los Angeles, where she most recently served as associate provost for undergraduate education.

Brown earned a B.S. in Music Education from the University of Connecticut in 1976; an M.A. in African American Studies and Music from Yale University in 1980; and a Ph.D. in Musicology from Yale in 1987. She was also an American Council on Education (ACE) Fellow at Pomona College from 2004-05.

Rae Linda Brown, Ph.D., has joined Pacific Lutheran University as provost and senior vice president for academic affairs.

Earlier in her career, Brown served as the Robert and Marjorie Rawlins Chair of the Department of Music at the University of California, Irvine, where she oversaw the development of the university’s new jazz program and final completion of a new Music and Media building in 1999. Also at UC Irvine, she served as faculty assistant to the executive vice chancellor and provost, where she functioned as dean of the eight interdisciplinary programs reporting to the provost’s office, including Asian American Studies, African American Studies, Women’s Studies, Latin American Studies, Chicano/Latino Studies, History of Philosophy, Transportation Science, and Global Peace and Conflict Studies. She is a noted scholar of Florence Beatrice Price, the first African-American woman to be recognized as a symphonic composer, and the first to have a composition played by a major orchestra.

During her eight-year tenure at LMU, Brown led the internationalization of the curriculum and restructuring of the study away program, including the establishment of a mission-based program in Cordoba, Argentina, and undergraduate research initiatives with the Chinese University of Hong Kong and the Beijing Center. She also established LMU’s first domestic exchange programs with Spelman College and Morehouse College, two of the oldest and most important historically black colleges.

In addition, Brown led efforts to restructure LMU’s Academic Resource Center, Disability Support Services, the University Honors Program, and the Office of National and International Fellowships, as well as providing administrative leadership for the development and implementation of a new core curriculum. In conjunction with the office of Student Affairs, she led the implementation of a three-year university retention strategic plan.

Vice President for Student Life

Joanna Royce-Davis, Ph.D.

Dr. Joanna Royce-Davis comes to us from the University of the Pacific, where she most recently served as Dean of Students in the Division of Student Life. In her 15-year career at the University of the Pacific, she has served as Associate Professor in the Benerd School of Education; Interim Vice President for Student Life; Assistant and Associate Vice President for Student Life; and as Associate Director of the Career Resource Center.

Joanna Royce-Davis

Dr. Royce-Davis earned a Certificate in Student Affairs Law & Policy from NASPA – Student Affairs Administrators in Higher Education in 2013; a 
Ph.D. in Rehabilitation Counseling from Syracuse University in 2001; an M.A. in Counselor Education from San Jose State University in 1994; and a B.S. in Special Education with an emphasis in Community and Mental Health Counseling from Indiana University in 1990.

Among her notable accomplishments, Joanna directs the graduate program in Student Affairs at the University of the Pacific. She has also served as lead or co-designer for multiple strategies focused on undergraduate student success, including the Western Association of Schools and Colleges Student Success essay; First Year Experience signature programs, including MOVE (see Pacificmove.org), which received the 2012 NASPA National Gold award; and the Retention Action Network.

In 2013, Dr. Royce-Davis received the Podesto Award for Excellence in Student Life, Mentoring, and Counseling, and in 2012 she was awarded the Cavanaugh Distinguished Service Award from the University of the Pacific. In 2009, she received the NASPA Region IV Scott Goodnight Award for Outstanding Service as a Dean, and in 2006 she was named a Pacific Woman of Distinction. She also received the Martin Luther King, Jr., Opening Doors award in 2005.

Vice President for Finance and Administration

Allan Belton

Allan Belton, Vice President for Finance and Administration, is an accomplished business and community leader with exceptional integrity and deep expertise in financial management, business operations and governance, strategic planning, project and performance measurement, and human resources management.

Allan most recently served as Managing Director and Chief Operations Officer at Bank of America Merrill Lynch, where he developed and managed strategic partnerships, business processes, governance, and performance management across a global treasury enterprise.

Allan Belton

In his 24-year career at Bank of America Merrill Lynch, Allan has also held positions as Director of Business Development and SVP Business Performance Manager, where he led regional operations for a ten-state market focused on building infrastructure, strategy, and policy to support a $2.5 billion line of business serving higher education and government.  Allan began his career at Seattle First National Bank where he served in several capacities focused on mergers & acquisitions, corporate planning and reporting, commercial credit, and product pricing analysis.  He holds a B.A. in Business Administration and a M.B.A. from Washington State University.

Allan is married to Melinda Krotz Belton, PLU Class of 1991; they live in Gig Harbor with their three children, where he serves as Chair of the Franciscan Foundation Board of Trustees, and as a volunteer in the Peninsula School District.

Vice President of Marketing and Communications

Donna Gibbs

Gibbs most recently served as managing director, and helped establish the west coast operations, of Bluetext, a Washington, D.C.-based digital marketing and strategic communications firm that counts among its clients Google, Adobe, Cisco and Intel. Before joining Bluetext, Gibbs lived and worked in Malta and Barcelona, Spain, where she served as chief marketing officer for emerging mobile media companies.

Prior to moving abroad, Gibbs served as senior vice president for consumer marketing and ecommerce at PlanetOut, a leading media and entertainment company based in San Francisco. She also helped lead the company to a successful IPO in 2004.

Donna Gibbs

Earlier, Gibbs was executive vice president at The Weber Group (later Weber Shandwick Worldwide), where she managed six offices and participated in managing key enterprise accounts including Adobe and Gateway Computer.
Gibbs has also served as vice president of corporate communications at Nike, where she was chief communications strategist and spokesperson on a wide range of issues including regulatory concerns, production sourcing and labor practices, mergers and acquisitions and financial performance during one of Nike’s most rapid periods of global expansion.

Prior to Nike, Gibbs was director of public relations at Mattel, Inc., where she was a member of an integrated brand marketing team devoted to reaching the billion-dollar milestone for Barbie worldwide sales. Gibbs began her corporate career at Apple as a public relations manager.

Gibbs graduated with a bachelor’s degree in communications arts and sciences from Michigan State University. Gibbs and her husband live in Gig Harbor with two spoiled standard poodles. She is a long-time volunteer for Meals on Wheels and National Public Radio.

Vice President for Advancement

Daniel Lee

Daniel Lee most recently served as Vice President of External Relations for Lutheran World Relief, an international relief and development organization with programs in approximately 35 countries, serving more than 7 million people annually. As the chief fundraising, donor relations and constituent engagement executive, Dan set the strategic direction of all external-facing efforts and guided LWR through their three most successful revenue generating years to date.

Daniel Lee

Prior to his role as Vice President, Dan lead LWR’s annual giving program and spearheaded the first comprehensive re-branding and website redevelopment process in more than 10 years. As Senior Director of Marketing for LWR, Dan implemented numerous fundraising and communications initiatives, including the creation of LWR’s highly successful alternative giving program.

Dan received his B.A. in Communication from Concordia College in Moorhead, Minnesota and a Master of Divinity degree from Luther Seminary in Saint Paul, Minnesota. A former outdoor ministry chaplain, Dan has committed much of his career to working with, and on behalf of, faith communities. Dan seeks to passionately connect the Christian life of faith with his extensive global perspective to further the university’s mission of educating students for lives of thoughtful inquiry, service, leadership and care.