President Thomas J. Haas is Grand Valley State University’s fourth president.
During the past 33 years, Tom Haas has been a tenured faculty member, department chair, dean, vice president and president. Just prior to his appointment in 2006, Haas was president of the State University of New York Cobleskill. In addition to his appointment as president of Grand Valley, Haas has also been appointed professor of chemistry in the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences.
He is a 1973 honors graduate of the U.S. Coast Guard Academy. He then earned a Master of Science (MS) in chemistry; another in environmental health sciences from The University of Michigan. Haas also holds a MS in human resources management from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute (Troy, NY) and a Ph.D. in chemistry from the University of Connecticut (Storrs, CT). Fellowship experiences in higher education include Yale University Faculty Fellow and an American Council on Education Fellow at Western Michigan University. He completed executive leadership programs at Harvard University. He is a retired Captain after 23 years of commissioned service in the USCG.
Haas is an internationally recognized expert in hazardous material transportation, strategic planning and higher education leadership, and has published numerous articles in a variety of journals.
He is active in the community serving on a number of boards including Chair of Michigan Campus Compact, Talent 2025, Van Andel Institute Graduate School, Spectrum Health Hospitals, Citizens Research Council of Michigan, Grand Rapids Medical Education and Research Center, The Right Place, Economic Club of Grand Rapids, What’s Next and Grand Rapids Opera. He is a member of the Grand Rapids Rotary Club, consultant and evaluator for North Central Association Higher Learning Commission and the Vice Chair of Division 2, NCAA and Member of Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference. He is former chair of the Michigan Public Universities Presidents Council.
Haas has professional and personal ties to Michigan. Haas is married to Marcia (Knapp) Haas, who is a native of Union City and a graduate of Albion College. They have three children and four grandchildren and have other family living in Grand Rapids.
Grand Valley State University, one of the 100 largest universities in the nation, attracts more than 24,000 students with high-quality programs and state-of-the-art facilities. Grand Valley is a comprehensive university serving students from all 83 undergraduate and 31 graduate degree programs form campuses in Allendale, Grand Rapids and Holland, and from regional centers in Muskegon, Detroit and Traverse City. The university is dedicated to individual student achievement, going beyond the traditional classroom experience, with research opportunities and business partnerships.