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The Council of Presidents Staff

Paul Francis

Paul Francis, Executive Director
(360) 292-4101

Born in Australia, Paul grew up in Tucson, Arizona. A first-generation college student, he graduated summa cum laude from the University of Arizona (U of A) with a BA in political science. For the next few years he reviewed and assessed applications for admission and coordinated various programs for admitted students as an admissions counselor in the Minority Student Recruitment unit of the University of Arizona's Office of Admissions and New Student Enrollment. He then returned to school, earning a Masters in Public Administration from the U of A where he served as president of the MPA student association.

Upon relocating to Seattle, Paul served as a senior admissions counselor with the University of Washington's Office of Admissions where he managed the campus tour guide program. He then served for five years as the lead policy staffer for the Washington State House Democratic Caucus on higher education policy and general government fiscal issues. Paul joined the Council of Presidents team in 2011 and was named executive director in 2013; he serves as the representative of the public baccalaureate sector on a variety of statewide committees and task forces, including the The Washington Student Achievement Council and Governor Jay Inslee's Results Washington initiative.

Cody Eccles

Cody Eccles, Director of Government Relations & Business Affairs
(360) 292-4103

Cody came to the Council of Presidents in September 2013. Prior to working for the Council, Cody spent four years working for the Washington State Senate Republican Caucus advising policy makers on issues related to higher education, capital budgeting, and government operations. Cody holds a Baccalaureate in Business Administration for the University of Washington, a Juris Doctorate from Seattle University, a Masters in Tax Law from the University of Washington and a Masters in Business Administration from the University of Washington Tacoma.

His primary focus has been in policy development, public policy, and statutory interpretation. Cody has worked in a variety of other fields including business to business sales, legal counsel to cities, and prosecution.

Julie Garver, Associate Director for Academic Affairs

Julie Garver, Director of Policy & Academic Affairs
(360) 292-4102

Julie Garver has spent the last fifteen years working in higher education policy and government relations in Washington, Oregon and Washington D.C. Prior to joining the Council of Presidents as Associate Director she was the Director of Government Relations for The Evergreen State College with responsibility for planning, research, and development of the funding and policy agenda for the College at the state and federal levels.

Garver's educational credentials include a Baccalaureate of Arts in International Political Economy with a minor in Economics from the University of Puget Sound, a Master of Arts in International Affairs with a focus in International Political Economy from American University, and a Ph.D. in higher education policy from Oregon State University.

Darshan Robertson, Senior Executive Assistant
(360) 292-4100

A native Washingtonian, Darshan has lived in the Olympia area since 2003. Prior to joining the Council of Presidents, she worked for 10 years as an executive assistant in the tribal gaming industry and also gained experience as a social media writer for a public relations firm. Darshan earned a BA from The Evergreen State College where she focused on creative writing.





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