John J. Bowen '77 has been with Johnson & Wales University for four decades. Throughout his career, his leadership has directed JWU’s success and cemented its commitment to preparing students for professional success through academics and professional skills, related work experiences, community and leadership opportunities and its robust career services.
Bowen has instituted a number of JWU initiatives, including the university’s previous strategic plan, FOCUS 2011, which has been transformative in its results and paved the way for a university dedicated to quality in everything it does.
Bowen began his career at JWU in 1974 as a faculty member in the newly established culinary arts program.
He rose through the ranks to become director of the culinary division and then dean of culinary arts in 1983.
Early on, he helped reaffirm the university’s focus on career education by establishing its career development office.
Bowen was promoted to vice president of administration in 1987, and then named executive vice president in 1990. He took on the additional position of president of the Providence Campus in 1997, and was appointed university president in 2004.
Community InvolvementA dedicated community leader, Bowen donates his time and expertise to a number of board affiliations, including the president’s leadership council of Save the Bay and the board of directors for the Rhode Island Commodores. He also currently serves as a bank director of Washington Trust Company, a director for the Newport Harbor Corporation, and previously served as a bank director and member of the advisory council for Citizens Bank of Rhode Island, a member of the board for The Providence Journal Co., chairman and member of the executive committee of the Providence Foundation and a trustee for the National Restaurant Association Educational Foundation.
His community involvement and passion for education have led to numerous recognitions and honors, including:
EducationBowen holds a bachelor’s degree from JWU, an associate degree from the Culinary Institute of America and a master’s degree in management from the American Management Association. In 1995, he received an honorary doctorate in business administration from Sullivan University.