Ditzler Extends Service to College for Two Additional Years to Focus on Special Projects
Albion, Michigan, December 3, 2019 – After a distinguished career in higher education spanning more than four decades, Dr. Mauri A. Ditzler has informed the Board of Trustees he plans to retire from his role as President of Albion College at the end of the 2019-20 academic year.
During a town hall meeting with students, faculty, staff and community leaders, Ditzler shared the news he will step back from day-to-day leadership of the liberal arts college in June 2020, transitioning into a new role where he will lead a number of special projects for up to the next two years. The Board of Trustees announced it has engaged a national firm to lead a search for the 17th president of Albion College.
“A passionate advocate for liberal arts education, Mauri Ditzler has embraced Albion as his own during his tenure with our college, and we are all the richer for it,” said Board Chair J. Donald Sheets, ’82.
“Over the past six years, Mauri has led our campus with a keen vision, boundless energy and unmatched enthusiasm that has allowed Albion College to achieve extraordinary results.
“As a College, our mission remains unchanged: We prepare students to translate critical thought into action through a liberal arts education. This mission and our strategic plan resonated with Mauri when he joined us six years ago and will again drive our national search.
“Mauri has been a tremendous champion of Albion and has left us poised for additional future successes. We are excited for him as he prepares to begin a new chapter. The Board is committed to continuity of our mission as we embark on a search process that engages the campus and community in order to find another exceptional leader for this role.”
Ditzler, 66, joined Albion College on July 1, 2014 after teaching and working in leadership positions at a number of liberal arts institutions, including Monmouth College in Illinois, Wabash College in Indiana, Milliken University in Illinois and College of the Holy Cross in Massachusetts.
Key accomplishments during his tenure at Albion include:
- Enhancing recruiting initiatives that have led to sustained enrollment growth
- Strengthening relationships with faculty, staff, students and alumni, which created a renewed sense of engagement on – and beyond – campus
- Raising more than $86 million – just $14 million shy of the goal announced in October – for the comprehensive campaign to fund new programs, capital projects and scholarships
- Expanding academic programs through the addition of classes in business and pre-medicine and strengthening the three pre-professional institutes, two centers of study and programs in marketing and computer science
- Creating new programs for first-generation and under-represented students that continue enhancing diversity and inclusion initiatives• Reducing the College deficit through mindful spending while still supporting local and regional businesses and vendors
- Partnering with the community on the redevelopment of downtown Albion, which has brought a new hotel, new restaurants and new shops to the community – in addition to new jobs
- Putting Albion back in touch with its roots by sparking contagious enthusiasm and bold confidence to the campus and greater Albion community, including the community, alumni, donors, parents and friends of the College
“To say it has been an honor and a privilege to serve as president of Albion College would not begin to adequately express the depth of my affection for my time here,” Ditzler said. “Working together, I feel we have accomplished much over the past six years, and I am thankful for the deep and abiding friendships and relationships I have established with all who hold the College dear.
“I so appreciate the confidence of our Board of Trustees in asking me to extend my role with Albion College. Greater scheduling flexibility will allow me to spend more time on two key priorities – my wife, Judi, and my lifelong love of farming – while working to ensure a smooth transition to the next president and continuing to serve the College.”
In this new role, Ditzler will continue to serve as an ambassador for Albion College on several key initiatives, including working hand-in-hand with its development team to ensure a successful completion of the comprehensive campaign, guiding the transition to a new president, ensuring strong ties to the local community are maintained and acting as an envoy for the College and community regionally and nationally.
If a new president has not been identified by July 1, 2020, Ditzler has considerately agreed to extend his tenure until a new successor has been found.
The Board of Trustees has appointed Michael J. Harrington, ’85 to establish a committee to lead a national search to select and welcome a new president to Albion College. Joey Miller, ’75 will serve as vice chair of the Search Committee. In addition to trustees, the committee will consist of faculty, staff, alumni and a student to ensure broad representation in the search process. Harrington and Miller have engaged the national academic search firm of Storbeck Pimentel & Associates to lead the process and expect to establish a search committee in the coming weeks.
“Mauri Ditzler is beloved by all who have met or worked with him, including students, faculty, staff, alumni and community members,” Harrington said. “His legacy will be one of propelling Albion College to be part of a greater, more inclusive and diverse community and, by tackling many of the problems of small-town America, using our experience to solve similar problems facing our nation and our world.
“Our search will be focused on finding a leader who similarly believes in the value of a liberal arts education and is excited at the prospect of joining our great team and building on the successes achieved. Albion’s initiatives and activities will continue unchanged and according to our strategic plan as we prepare a national search for our next president.
“We so appreciate Mauri’s willingness to continue to serve Albion after his formal retirement. He believes strongly in a well-organized and executed transition to a new president and is committed to supporting the process fully.”
For more information on the Albion presidential search, visit albion.edu.
About Albion College
Albion College is a private liberal arts college of approximately 1,550 students and is nationally recognized for its academic excellence in the liberal arts tradition, a learning-centered commitment and a future-oriented perspective. The College is a leader in preparing students to anticipate, solve and prevent problems in order to improve the human and global condition. Albion immerses students in the creation and processing of knowledge and graduates skilled architects of societal change, active citizens and future leaders. The College is dedicated to the highest quality in undergraduate education and is committed to diversity as a core institutional value.
Albion, Michigan is a culturally diverse community in the south-central part of the state. The College recognizes the value of community, both on- and off-campus and has invested resources in supporting the revitalization of the greater Albion community. This work offers an increasingly vibrant city around the campus that provides students with a fuller experience as they prepare to become engaged citizens in their own communities. For more information, visit albion.edu.