What is the State Authorization Network (SAN)?

In spring 2011, WCET (WICHE Cooperative for Educational Technologies) created the State Authorization Network (SAN) to serve institutions and organizations nationwide by providing training, support, and opportunities to collaborate to navigate regulatory compliance for out-of-state activities of post-secondary institutions. SAN held its first meeting on April 6, 2011, in Boulder, Colorado, to bring the new organization members together with experts to explain the vision for the network, public policy behind state authorization, federal and state compliance issues, and the possibility of reciprocity in the future.

Today, this important work continues. By joining SAN, members will receive important interstate compliance support in the years to come to manage Federal compliance, compliment institutional state approvals through reciprocity (SARA), as well as continuing to support institutions attaining state institutional approval through traditional individual state by state process.  SAN provides deeper examination and strategy consideration for regulatory compliance including ancillary regulatory issues related to educational technologies.

SAN members collaborate to address the problems, discuss solutions, and prepare for the future.

Currently, SAN maintains more than 150 memberships that include approximately 900 institutions and organizations nationwide!  View our current SAN Participants.

Follow Us on LinkedIn - State Authorization Network (SAN).

The SAN Team

Cheryl Dowd, J.D.;  Senior Director, State Authorization Network (SAN) & WCET Policy Innovations (303) 541-0210  cdowd@wiche.edu

Leigha Fletcher,  Administrative Assistant, (303) 541- 0211 lfletcher@wiche.edu

Kathryn Kerensky, JD; Director, Digital Learning Policy & Compliance, (303) 541-0290  kkerensky@wiche.edu

Jana Walser-Smith, EdD; Director, Interstate Compliance & SAN Member Outreach, (303) 541-0289 jwalsersmith@wiche.edu 

SAN Advisory Group


Beginning in 2018, SAN established the SAN Advisory Group.  The eight member panel of SAN members serve the membership by making recommendations on programmatic issues of interest to the membership at-large.  The SAN Advisory Group meets virtually periodically and will attempt to create a face to face meeting opportunity to coincide with the NASASPS Annual Conference, which is a collaboration with SAN.

Anyone who is a staff member with a SAN member institution or organization can be nominated to serve on the Advisory Group.  Nominees do not have to be designated as the “SAN coordinator” for the membership. 

You may wish to review the SAN Advisory Group - Procedures document.

If you have any further questions, please contact Jana Walser-Smith, jwalsersmith@wiche.edu.

2023 Elections -  have been completed.  

In 2023 there were four vacancies in the following categories: 

  • (1) Public 4-yr with an FTE 10,000+
  • (1) Independent institution with an FTE less than 2,500 
  • (1) Association/System affiliate/coordinator of a group membership 
  • (1) Public 4-yr with an FTE 9,999 or less

Advisory Group Members

The 2023-2024 SAN Advisory Group consists of the following members:

Ryan Faulkner - College of Eastern Idaho - Category: 2yr institution (2022-2024)

Mitch Gilbert - Western Governors University - Category: Independent Institution with FTE greater than 2,500 (2022-2024)

Blake Halladay- Nightingale College - Category: Independent Institutions with FTE less than 2,500 (2023-2025)

Michael Jolley - University of Nebraska - Category: Association/System Affiliation/Coordinator of a group membership (2022-2024)

Kelly Oehlerking - Western Dakota Tech - Category: 2yr institution (2022-2024)

LaDonna Rodvold - University of South. Category: - University of South Dakota Public 4-yr with an FTE 9,999 or less (2023-2025)

Kate Stottlemyer - The Ohio State University. Category: Public 4-Year institution with FTE Greater than 10,000 (2023-2025)

Erika Swain - University of Colorado-Boulder. Category: System affiliate/coordinator of a group membership.(2023-2025)

Special Interest Teams

SAN members may apply to and participate in Special Interest Teams.

What is a Special Interest Team?

  • Small issue workgroup – 7 people on each team.
  • Meets virtually for a period of time (as needed to address the issue).
  • To discuss and research identified topics (issues of concern to SAN members).
  • Team members will do independent research to contribute to the team.
  • Provides deliverables as determined by The Team. Examples could include:  white papers, webcasts, task list, one pagers, etc. etc.

Special Interest Teams were developed with the advice and recommendations of the SAN Advisory Group.  The topics will continue to be identified for future Special Interest Teams.

 Current SAN Special Interest Team topics include:

  1. Professional Licensure Research, Disclosures and Collaboration (Click here to view resources)
  2. Institutional Engagement

Professional Licensure Special Interest Team
Leeann Fields, University of Nevada, Las Vegas
Kimberly Foore, West Virginia University 
Ricky LaFosse, University of Michigan
Michael Jolley, University of Nebraska 
Cleston Murray, University of Arkansas
Erika Swain, University of Colorado (Boulder & System) 
Emily Woods, University of Kentucky 
Geni Wright, Valencia College
Jeannie Yockey-Fine, NC-SARA (Advisor)

Institutional Engagement Special Interest Team
Cheryl Carroll, University of Virginia
Brandie Elliott, Missouri Online
Dorothy Jones, Norfolk State University
Anne Klingen, University of Mississippi
Deb Maeder, Bryan College of Health Sciences
Sherri Melton, Weber State University
Peggy Simons, Relay Graduate School of Education

WCET (WICHE Cooperative for Educational Technologies)

About WCET

WCET (WICHE Cooperative for Educational Technologies) is the leader in the practice, policy, & advocacy of technology-enhanced learning in higher education. WCET is a national, member-driven, non-profit which brings together colleges, universities, higher education organizations, and companies to collectively improve the quality and reach of technology-enhanced learning programs.  WCET was founded by WICHE (Western Interstate Commission for Higher Education) to meet a growing need to integrate distance learning and educational technology into the academic services of higher education institutions in the western region.  The WCET membership is a critical part of SAN.  WCET, an established organization for more than 30 years, provides information on relevant topic areas that are critical for compliance staff to engage in meaningful dialogue at the institution to develop institutionally unified compliance strategies. We invite you to learn more about membership and consider joining WCET. Learn more about the benefits of joining both WCET and SAN.

WICHE (Western Interstate Commission for Higher Education)


Created in 1953, WICHE (Western Interstate Commission for Higher Education)is one of four regional U.S. interstate compacts.  This dynamic federal compact, composed of 16 Western states and territories, maintains a diverse portfolio of programs and priorities that help students pursue higher education affordably and conveniently, accelerate region-wide sharing of ideas and resources, provide expert research and policy guidance, and prepare universities, colleges, and communities for social, economic and technological change. WICHE was a leader in establishing the State Authorization Reciprocity Agreement (SARA).  WICHE maintains four divisions:  Mental Health Program, Policy Analysis and Research, Programs and Services, and WCET. Learn more at wiche.edu.