Fayetta M. Paulsen Lecture

Each year, Residence Life at BGSU sponsors what is known as the Fayetta M. Paulsen Lecture as a staff development initiative for Student Affairs and the Higher Education program. This lecture is in honor of Fayetta Paulsen who served as Dean of Students at BGSU for many years. She retired after nearly 30 years at BGSU and was involved both on our campus and nationally at many levels.

Alexis Kanda-Olmstead

2019 Paulsen Lecture


DATE | Friday, April 26
TIME | 11 a.m. - Noon
LOCATION | Bowen-Thompson Student Union | McMaster Room 308.

Are you "leadership material"? The answer depends in large part on your identities. Biased models of leadership reinforce dynamics of power and oppression within our organizations, which is why we must make concerted efforts to develop leaders who do not fit the typical prototype. By critically examining the construct of "leader" from a social justice perspective, we can learn what it takes for people from historically marginalized and minoritized identities to embrace and practice leadership.


Alexis Kanda-Olmstead is the director of advancement talent management at Dartmouth College where she helps people maximize their potential to achieve organizational priorities. Her responsibilities include coaching staff, designing professional development programs and leading the division’s diversity and inclusion strategy. Throughout her twenty-year career in higher education, Alexis has worked to help students, faculty and staff actualize their potential as leaders through self-knowledge and personal empowerment. As a scholar and practitioner of women’s development, social justice and organizational psychology, Alexis believes with grace and humor we can create positive change that benefits everyone. Alexis is a blogger and the founder of AKO Collective, a women's leadership development company offering training to women and girls. She presents nationally on gender-related topics and recently gave a TEDx talk on The Science of Women’s Leadership. Alexis holds a bachelor's degree in organizational studies from the University of Michigan, a master's degree in college student personnel from Bowling Green State University and a certificate in organization development from Colorado State University. She is a certified StrengthsQuest Educator and Myers-Briggs Type Indicator (MBTI) Practitioner. She resides in Woodstock, Vermont, with her family.

Past lecturers have included:

  • Dr. Kathleen Kerr (2018)
  • Dr. Jancie Gerda (2016)
  • Dr. Kathy Collins (2015)
  • Dr. Sherry Woosley (2014)
  • Dr. Susan Komives (2013)
  • Nancy Footer (2012)
  • Dr. Pat Mielke (2011)
  • Dr. Jan Arminio (2010)
  • Dr. Peggy Jablonki (2009)

Fayetta M. Paulsen

In June of 1990, Fayetta M. Paulsen retired as the Assistant Vice President for Student Affairs and Residential Services at Bowling Green State University. This event honors her 27 years of service to the University. While at BGSU, she also served as the Associate Dean of Students, Acting Dean of Students, and Dean of Women. Prior to coming to Bowling Green, she was Dean of Women at Luther College, Associate Professor and Chair of Health and Physical Education for Women at Augustana College, and Professor and Acting Director of Health and Physical Education for Women at St. Olaf College.

Ms. Paulsen was a graduate of Western Michigan University and MacMurray College. She also attended the University of Colorado and attended the doctoral program at Syracuse University. Throughout her career, she received numerous awards and honors, including membership in Alpha Lambda Delta, Mortar Board, Phi Lambda Theta, Alpha Xi Delta’s 75th Anniversary Award of the top 10% Members for Achievement, the Ohio Association of Women Deans, Administrators and Counselors’ (OAWDAC) 1985 President’s Recognition Award, and the Ohio College Personnel Association’s (OCPA) Phillip A. Tripp Distinguished Service Award. In 1989, BGSU’s Chapter of Mortar Board was named the Fayetta M. Paulsen Cap and Gown Chapter of Mortar Board. In 2003, Ms. Paulsen was honored by ACPA as a Diamond Honoree.

Professional organizations played an important part of Ms. Paulsen’s career. She served as president of OAWDAC, OCPA, and the Ohio Association of Student Personnel Administrators (OASPA.) Additionally, she held several offices within the National Association of Women Deans, Administrators, and Counselors. She also published articles in the Journal of NAWDAC and Fraternity Month. She made presentations throughout the state, region, and nation.

Ms. Paulsen died February 20, 2005.