Meet President Paul | Capital University, Columbus Ohio


  • Beth Paul in front of gate

    Meet President Paul

    On July 1, 2016, Dr. Elizabeth "Beth" L. Paul became the 16th president of Capital University, having served the last seven years as the senior academic officer at Stetson University in Central Florida.

    Following a national search launched in spring 2015 after President Denvy A. Bowman, Ph.D., announced he would retire from the presidency at the end of his 10th year, Capital’s Board of Trustees elected Paul as president. She was the unanimous choice of the Board and the search committee.

    As a national leader in higher education, Paul’s many accomplishments include redesigning financial and data infrastructure to support data-driven decision-making; introducing multiyear budgeting and planning models, and strategic enrollment management; growing diversity and inclusiveness; strengthening academic programs and university marketing strategy; and championing organizational culture change to connect and unite everyone to one university mission.

    Dr. Elizabeth Paul engaging with students
    Capital's 16th President

    On July 1, 2016, Dr. Elizabeth "Beth" L. Paul became the 16th president of Capital University. She was the unanimous choice of the Board and the search committee after President Denvy A. Bowman, Ph.D., announced he would retire from the presidency at the end of his 10th year.

    Paul previously was a member of the senior leadership team at The College of New Jersey, in Ewing, N.J., where she was a member of the faculty since 1992.

    Well-known as a consultant focusing on student-learning outcomes assessment, strategic planning and change management, Paul has held national leadership roles in key higher education initiatives, including community-engaged learning and undergraduate research. She was president of the Council on Undergraduate Research in 2010-2011, and currently serves on the board of directors of the National Association of College and University Business Officers, and as a task force chair of the Council of Independent Colleges.

    Under Bowman’s tenure, Capital has enjoyed unprecedented financial strength, strategic enrollment management, and energized alumni and donor engagement. So to further Capital’s advancement and meet the challenges of higher education in the 21st century, Paul brings high energy, student-centered engagement, and a history of extensive, diverse leadership to Capital. She passionately shares the University’s vision of mission-informed transformative education, deep and meaningful corporate and community partnerships, and learning outcomes as relevant to students as they are to the community, the workforce and the world.

    Her research, publications and presentations include topics such as high-impact, engaged and experiential learning opportunities; undergraduate research; university-community partnerships; the role of faculty in undergraduate research; institutional financial models; faculty workload models; interdisciplinary and transdisciplinary learning opportunities for students and faculty; and relationship development and dynamics.

    Recent Publications

    "The Value of Good" - University Business
    "Bringing the True Value of Higher Education to the Forefront" - Inside Higher Ed

    Dr. Paul's family

    Dr. Paul’s family includes her husband, Dr. William Ball, a political science professor, and daughters Martha, a student at George Washington University, and Sophie, a rising high school senior who will be attending Bexley High School during the 2016-17 school year.

    Paul holds a bachelor’s degree in psychology, with a minor in statistics, and a doctorate in personality psychology, both from Boston University. She did a predoctoral training fellowship at the National Institute of Mental Health, and earned a certificate in higher education administration from Harvard Institute for Educational Management.

    When she arrived on campus, President Paul immediately recognized the importance of Capital’s place in Columbus. Capital is a private university partner in innovation, ideas and learning approaches that extend beyond established boundaries to build capacity, tackle social challenges, and improve lives through higher education. Our Bexley and downtown Columbus campuses join two thriving communities, and more than 19,000 proud Capital alumni live and work in the Columbus Region, forming a strong network of critical thinkers, problem-solvers, and inclusive, principled leaders. “Bexley and Columbus are integral to Capital’s learning community, expanding students’ experience, skills, impact and horizons,” says Dr. Paul, “Wherever Cap graduates go, they create and enrich community by applying the ways in which they have learned how to learn and live at Capital.” Our students, graduates and employees help propel Ohio’s capital city to its status as a top-ranked destination for professionals, creatives, businesses and more. 

    Dr. Paul and her husband, Dr. Bill Ball, and their daughters, Martha and Sophie, are thrilled to call Capital and Bexley home, and are eagerly getting acquainted with metropolitan Columbus. 


    Read President Paul's Extensive Background

    Biography (PDF)
    Full CV (PDF)