Luoma named executive vice chancellor for administration, chief administrative officer

Nichol Luoma

Nichol L. Luoma, vice president of University Business Services at Arizona State University (ASU), has been named executive vice chancellor for administration and chief administrative officer at Washington University in St. Louis, announced Chancellor Andrew D. Martin.

Luoma, whose appointment is effective Feb. 5, will succeed Shantay N. Bolton, who left the position in August to become executive vice president for administration and finance and chief business officer at the Georgia Institute of Technology.

An ASU alumna and first-generation college graduate, Luoma has more than two decades of global business operations leadership experience. She has served since 2012 at ASU, where she is responsible for multiple enterprise-wide operations, including supply chain (procurement and materials management), auxiliaries, employee health, parking and transit, sustainability practices, risk and resilience management, physical security initiatives, emergency management, and environmental health and safety.

At WashU, Luoma will oversee core administrative divisions, including human resources and institutional equity; procurement; supplier diversity; environmental health and safety; and information technology (managed jointly). She also will direct operations including facilities management (campus planning and construction, plant operations and sustainability); public safety (police and emergency preparedness); university services (campus dining, parking and transportation, campus card services); global travel; and the ombuds position on the Danforth Campus; as well as coordinating with the School of Medicine’s administrative functions.

Luoma will serve on Martin’s cabinet, working alongside the other executive vice chancellors and vice chancellors.

“I’m very pleased that we were able to recruit such an experienced, skilled and respected national leader in university operations,” Martin said. “A visionary administrator, Nichol has led numerous transformative initiatives at ASU that have increased the university’s effectiveness and won national recognition.

“We look forward to Nichol bringing her strategic leadership experience to WashU to ensure continued operational excellence while fostering a culture of inclusion and innovation,” Martin said.

Under Luoma’s leadership, ASU’s operations have received multiple national awards, including recognition as an AASHE STARS Platinum school. ASU’s AASHE STARS score currently ranks it number one in the United States and number two in the world. ASU also was recognized by the Arizona Capitol Times in 2021 for Best Response in Crisis Management.

“Nichol has been a critical leader at ASU and played a central role in our successful navigation of the COVID epidemic,” ASU President Michael Crow said. “We will miss her creativity, energy and leadership.”

Prior to joining ASU, Luoma served as vice president of operations for two juvenile products companies, Boon Inc. and Keen Distribution. Before Boon and Keen, she spent nearly a decade in multiple business and supply chain roles at Intel Corp., which included management of complex international supply chains.

“I am both humbled and thrilled to be joining Washington University under Chancellor Martin,” Luoma said. “WashU is a special place; a world-renowned, prestigious research university that is also focused on St. Louis and the surrounding community. I am looking forward to being part of the university community and leading the administrative function in support of the strategic plan, ‘Here and Next.’

“I will miss ASU and my amazing colleagues, but the beautiful thing about higher education is that we are all on the same team. I am beyond excited to get to know the amazing faculty, staff and students at WashU.”

In 2022, Luoma received the 2022 National Association of College and University Business Officers (NACUBO) Rising Star Award, which is given to an emerging leader in higher education finance and business.

NACUBO recognized Luoma’s leadership of ASU’s sustainability operations and practices, including reaching the goal of carbon neutrality in the university’s greenhouse emissions. The organization also noted her work overseeing such initiatives as helping create a new employee health program and office and improving the materials management operation to ensure more efficient deliveries across four ASU campuses during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Luoma, who was appointed to the Western Association of College and University Business Officers (WACUBO) board of directors in 2021, is a past president of the National Association of Educational Procurement (NAEP) and has been a faculty member for NAEP and WACUBO. 

Other recent awards include the Neil Markee Communicator of the Year Award from NAEP in 2021 and the 2020 Positively Powerful Woman Sustainability Leadership Award from Triad West Inc., which provides services in diversity, equity and inclusion, among other leadership development programs.

Luoma graduated summa cum laude from ASU’s W. P. Carey School of Business and Barrett, the university’s Honors College, with a bachelor’s degree in supply chain management in 2000. She earned a master’s degree in business administration from Duke University in 2006, graduating summa cum laude and as a Fuqua Scholar.