Francoise Lepage, PhD

For thirty years, Françoise Lepage, PhD, Professor and Dean Emerita at Dominican University of California’s School of Business, has pursued a vision: To enhance Marin’s global perspective. What makes this woman unique is her singular ability to translate her vision into concrete plans and partnerships.

In the 1980s she secured a National Science Foundation grant to create a program that would enhance the global perspective of Marin’s K- 2 teachers. What’s unique is that Lepage’s NSF grant was for a social studies program—unheard of from a foundation focused on science and mathematics. NSF funded the program for four years, and then hired Dr. Lepage as a consultant to promote social science grant opportunities within NSF.

In the 1990s Dr. Lepage became the founding director of Dominican’s Graduate Program in Pacific Basin Studies. With faculty backing for the new MBA curriculum with an innovative new focus, she secured a grant from the Compton Foundation to establish the program. Lepage’s work has been the foundation of Dominican University’s business program for twenty-five years.

In fall 2007, thanks to Dr. Lepage’s vision, Dominican University will begin its Green MBA program. This innovative curriculum, an offshoot of Pacific Basin Studies, is an example of the way Francoise Lepage works: Concept to vision to implementation to reimplementation— accompanied by amazing perseverance, tenacity and long-term commitment.

Along with these formidable academic contributions, Lepage enjoys getting a personal look at the world. Besides meeting alumni in Taipei, Tokyo, Bangkok and Shanghai, addresses to business groups in Seoul, Sydney, Marrakech and even San Rafael fill her calendar. She’s also brought an astonishing group of world figures to lecture on campus, among them the late U.S. ambassador to the UN Jeanne Kirkpatrick, former secretary of defense Robert McNamara, anthropologist Louise Leakey, oceanographer Sylvia Earle, psychologist Kay Redfield Jamison and string theorist Brian Green.

Dr. Lepage has received many awards for her achievements, among them a Japan Foundation Fellowship, the Distinguished Citizen Award from the Marin Cultural Center, the Sarlo Distinguished Professor Award for Lifetime Achievement, and the Pacific Basin Alumni Award.

Marymount University, Lepage’s alma mater, has awarded this outstanding woman a Doctor of Human Letters as a “distinguished alumna and educator.” Young women searching for a role model with the vision, fortitude and talent to change the world need look no further than Marin’s own Françoise Lepage.