Cornish College names new president

Dec 1, 2010

Cornish College will welcome its first woman president since the arts school was established by Nellie Cornish in 1914.  Dr. Nancy Uscher will leave her position as provost of the California Institute of the Arts (CalArts) and join the Seattle arts school in August next year.

Uscher is currently CalArts' chief academic officer, a post she's held since 2004.

She's a concert violist who frequently performs, and was with the Jerusalem Symphony for six years.  She left to pursue an academic career.

Before joining CalArts, Uscher spent 12 years at the University of New Mexico, where she served as associate provost, chair of the school's music department and as music professor.

In a statement released Wednesday, Cornish Trustee Roger Bass said Uscher is ready for her new challenge:

"We feel that she will be a good match to help Cornish College of the Arts meet its current needs – internally and externally - and will help to position Cornish for a bright future," Bass said.

Bass led the search committee to replace retiring president Sergei P. Tschernisch, who led the visual and performing arts college for 17 years. Tschernisch will step down next May.