The key to thriving in this ever-changing landscape is your ability to learn, grow, and adapt continuously.

President Christine Riordan Adelphi University

Meet President Christine M. Riordan

  • PhD in organizational behavior, Georgia State University
  • MBA, Georgia State University
  • Bachelor of Textile Engineering, Georgia Institute of Technology

Christine M. Riordan, PhD, is the first woman to serve as president of Adelphi University. She is an internationally recognized expert in leadership development, team building, diversity and inclusion, and is recognized for her groundbreaking initiatives to personalize and transform the higher education experience.

Dr. Riordan’s vision has transformed Adelphi into a nationally recognized modern metropolitan university. She spearheaded the development of the University’s first-ever strategic plan, Momentum: 2015-2021, during which time she oversaw the $50 million renovation of the Ruth S. Harley University Center and the opening of the $76 million, 100,000-square-foot Nexus academic building that houses Adelphi’s top-ranked nursing school. In addition, Dr. Riordan established Adelphi’s highly regarded Office of Diversity, Equity, Inclusion and Belonging and initiated a Diversity Certificate training program for its faculty, staff and surrounding community.

Dr. Riordan also created the University’s second strategic plan for 2022–2027, Momentum 2, with increasingly innovative goals to strengthen academic distinction, foster inclusivity and connectivity, and sustain smart growth. Under her leadership, the University community has grown more diverse than ever and launched more than 50 new academic degree programs.

Awards and Accolades

The Council for Advancement and Support of Education (CASE) awarded Dr. Riordan their highest honor in 2021 for her “outstanding efforts in promoting the understanding and support of education.” The organization also cited her leadership during the COVID-19 pandemic—both at Adelphi and across our region as a guiding voice in New York state’s higher education restart plan in her role as chair of the Commission on Independent Colleges and Universities (CICU).

Diverse: Issues in Higher Education magazine named Dr. Riordan one of the 25 Top Women in Higher Education Who Are Making a Difference in 2018. She has been named one of the most influential people on Long Island every year since 2016 by the Long Island Press and since 2018 by City & State New York. She has also been included on the City & State New York Higher Education Power List every year since 2021. Long Island Business News lists Dr. Riordan among its Long Island Business Influencers – Dynamic Women Leaders.

For other recent awards, rankings and accolades recognizing Adelphi University and Dr. Riordan, visit

Press Photos


President Riordan and Georgia


President Riordan Press Photo


President Riordan Press Photo


President Riordan Press Photo


President Riordan Press Photo

Strategic Vision: Momentum 2 and Milestones

Dr. Riordan designed Momentum 2: 2022-2027 to sustain Adelphi’s mission, vision and values. Deepening Adelphi’s position as the premier institution of higher education on Long Island, M2 builds on our proud legacy of promoting connection, innovation and transformation.

Over the course of 2021–2022, more than 1,400 members of Adelphi’s extraordinary community engaged in a thoughtful planning and evaluative process to build Momentum 2. Dr. Riordan engaged leadership, faculty, staff, students and alumni in focused roundtables, internal and external assessments, and the development of action plans to create an inclusive and cohesive strategy. The result is a roadmap that commits to remaining nimble, modern, and relevant—all while supporting our students, faculty, staff and alumni in unique and personal ways.

Here are a few highlights of what’s been accomplished since the plan launched:

  • U.S. News & World Report significantly elevated Adelphi’s national rankings across multiple categories due to exceptional student outcomes.
  • Three faculty members were selected for Fulbright honors in 2023.
  • The College of Nursing and Public Health is 1 of 10 schools in the United States selected by the American Association of Colleges of Nursing to participate in a national program designed to prepare the next generation of nurses with strong skills in resilience, self-care and well-being.
  • The revamped computer science curriculum won the Inspiring Programs in STEM Award from INSIGHT Into Diversity magazine for doubling the number of women in the program and increasing the number of Black students by 150 percent.
  • Adelphi recorded its highest one-year retention numbers in 10 years, with more than 85 percent of first-year students returning for their sophomore year.
  • The Corporate and Community Partnership Program launched and has attracted more than 40 external partners that are supporting student success.
  • The University secured a record number of deposits from first-year students for the fall 2023 semester and ultimately welcomed the largest first-year class in its history.
  • Adelphi’s commitment to sustainability earned recognition from the Princeton Review in its list of Green Colleges for 2023.

Connect With Our President

Our president is actively engaged at the state level in higher education leadership, as well as in local Long Island communities. Here are just a few of the ways you can learn more and stay in touch.

From My Desk

On the first Wednesday of each month, President Riordan releases a new edition of her From My Desk newsletter, spotlighting stories of transformation and powerful community partnerships.

Subscribe or view past issues here.

Follow on Social

From finding stories about our amazing students and faculty to seeing pictures of our campus cherry blossoms, keep up to date with President Riordan on your favorite social media platform.

You can also follow Georgia, Dr. Riordan’s Olde English Bulldog. A student favorite, Georgia often visits campus and stops for photo opps.

I may be a bulldog, but I’m a Panther at heart!

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