Office of the President

Wilson Hall, Suite 4000
371 Wilson Boulevard
Rochester, MI 48309-4486
(location map)


The Office of the President works to ensure that the university's vision and mission are carried out on a daily basis. The office includes members of events, communication and administration teams.

204 Wilson Hall

Ora Hirch Pescovitz

Hirsch Pescovitz
(248) 370-3500

As the Chief Executive Officer the President has overall responsibility for the university. The President provides leadership and oversight for all aspects of the university, including academics, finance, planning, student affairs and enrollment management, advancement, athletics, government and community relations and other key areas. The Provost, vice presidents, and several other staff members report to the President. The President works closely with the Provost and vice presidents to ensure that the strategic direction and policies of the university are aligned with its mission. The President reports to the Board of Trustees and works with the Board in establishing policies to guide the institution.

A head shot of Joshua Merchant.
Joshua D. Merchant

Chief of Staff
(248) 370-4287

The chief of staff serves as the senior advisor to the President and is responsible for recommending policies and practices and other matters to the President that promote the excellence and success of the university. He oversees the university’s strategic plan and builds collaborative relationships across the entire OU community to advance the university’s mission, vision and strategic goals. The Chief of Staff also provides leadership and oversight for the Office of the PresidentUniversity Human Resources, and University Technology Services.

Frank Provenzano
Director of Presidential Communications & Initiatives
(248) 370-3645

The Director of Presidential Communications and Initiatives manages a range of internal/external executive communications, and develops and implements key presidential initiatives to support the university's strategic goals.

A headshot of Adrienne Bass.
Adrienne Bass
Executive Associate to the President
(248) 370-3502

A head shot of Susan Dawson
Susan Dawson
Director of Executive Events
(248) 370-4908

The Director of Executive Events is responsible for planning, promoting, managing and executing the President's signature events, cultivation meetings, and special meetings and events for the Board of Trustees that advance the mission and vision of Oakland University.

A head shot of Renee Dembeck.
Renee M. Kazirut
Executive Office Assistant
(248) 370-3503

A head shot of Patricia Gillespie.
Patricia Gillespie
Event Manager
(248) 370-2053

The Event Manager is responsible for the planning and execution of larger signature events within the University Executive Events Portfolio that advance the mission and vision of Oakland University.

Headshot of Vernita Parker
Vernita Y. Parker
Executive Secretary
(248) 370-3501