I started working at the College in February of 1998. At that time, the president (of the college) had been near the end of a 17 year reign, was mired in controversy, and absent for most of his last year in office. In fact, I couldn’t pick the guy out of a lineup until he finally showed his face at a convocation he called to tell (lie) about some of the aforementioned controversy.
After RVW was gone, a search process left us with a new president who took office on March 25th of 1999. There’s that expression “hope springs eternal” which I think the entire College community was aspiring to; Morale had been down for a long time and at this point there was seismic blend of hope and fear in the air. The fear factor had increased a bit when eight top level administrators had found themselves on the unemployment line before the first month of the new president’s reign has lapsed. Of course the big question at the time was whether or not this represented the release of dead wood or proof positive of the theory “absolute power corrupts absolutely”? It wasn’t long before most of us realized the latter was true and morale once again dipped; farther and faster than before. Unfortunately, the reign of horror lasted for five and a half long years before Dr. N retired (surprise, surprise – in a wealth of controversy of his own).
So, a new search began in the summer of 2004 and once again, the college community waits, wonders, and hopes. I made a conscious decision to stay abreast of the presidential search process and even took part in the final interviews where final six candidates (one by one) meet with the entire college community and promote the curriculum vitae (resume) and answer questions. It was during this process where I made my mind up as to who I’d like to see as our next president but the only input I had was my evaluation form that I was asked to submit after each of the interviews.
I am elated that as of March 1st, Dr. J took office as president of our College. Having listened to her speak, had a conversation with her, and watched her as she greeted the college community one by one from teachers, to staff, to janitors, and students – listening, taking notes, and being attentive. I have great hope for the future of our wonderful school and look forward to all of the wonderful possibilities. Here’s to the future!