Father Stephen Sundborg became president of Seattle University in July 1997. He leads a comprehensive, independent university of more than 7,500 undergraduate and graduate students and 1,000 faculty and staff members.
Since becoming president, Father Sundborg's key objectives have been to encourage student-centered education, enhance academic excellence, and develop resources to support a growing student population. During his tenure, Seattle University has built a new law school, a student center, and student residences. Father Sundborg is strongly committed to promoting social justice, a core value of the Jesuit Catholic education. He actively supports programs that encourage students, faculty, and staff to make a difference, whether in the local community or developing countries. As President, Father Sundborg has bestowed honorary degrees on such social justice leaders as Nelson Mandela, Archbishop Desmond Tutu, and Corazon Aquino.
Father Sundborg grew up in the Territory of Alaska. He entered the Jesuits in 1961 and was ordained a priest in Seattle in 1974. He completed his doctoral studies in spirituality at the Pontifical Gregorian University in Rome in 1982. He taught theology at Seattle University from 1982-1990, was appointed Rector of the Seattle University Jesuit community in 1986, and served as Provincial of the Northwest Jesuits from 1990 to 1996. Father Sundborg is the twenty-first president to lead Seattle University since it was founded in 1891.