'The Evolving College' was the Topic of President Richard F. Giese's Mount Union College Inaugural Address

April 13, 2010

Using 'the evolving college' as his theme, Dr. Richard F. Giese paid homage to the past, praised the current state of the College and established the plans for the future in an inaugural address at Mount Union College on Friday, September 30.

Giese, who was selected as the College's 11th president in its 159 year history, was formally installed at the inauguration ceremony held on the south portico of Chapman Hall. Among the audience were delegates from 49 colleges and universities; class representatives from the Class of 1934 through 2004; members of the Board of Trustees; members of the faculty, administration and campus community; and hundreds of alumni and friends of the College.

Giese outlined his plans for the future in six key areas: developing a curriculum for the future, enriching the residential experience, providing for a diverse environment, managing enrollment growth, building endowment and ensuring fiscal strength, and enhancing the visibility and reputation of the College.

Giese challenged the campus community to provide the leadership necessary to 'ignite the flame' of learning for the students. 'Our evolving college will need to continue to change and improve in the future as it has in the past,' Giese said. 'Mount Union is on the brink of something fantastic. Together we can share in being a part of something that is bigger and more important than we are individually.'

The inauguration featured a number of speakers who brought greetings, including: Lee Ann Thorn, chair of the Mount Union College Board of Trustees; Bishop John Hopkins, Bishop of the East Ohio Area of the United Methodist Church; Toni Middleton, mayor of the city of Alliance; Patricia Gates, president of the Alumni Council; Janice Behner, chair of the College's Support Staff Advisory Council; Gregory King, director of advancement for major gifts representing the administrative staff; Andrew Ricci, president of Student Senate; and Dr. Truman Turnquist, vice president for academic affairs and dean of the College.


Gary Johnston, who chaired the presidential search committee, presented Giese during the ceremony.

On hand for the investiture and medallion ceremony were former Mount Union College presidents Dr. G. Benjamin Lantz, Jr., the eighth president from 1980 to 1985; Dr. Clifford D. Shields, interim president from 1985 to 1986; and Dr. Harold M. Kolenbrander, the ninth president, from 1986-2000.

Rev. Marty CashBurless, the College chaplain, provided the invocation and benediction, and Rev. Dr. Kenneth Chalker, pastor at First United Methodist Church of Cleveland and a member of the College Board of Trustees, delivered the scripture reading. The Mount Union College Choir, under the direction of Dr. Scott Dorsey, performed and led the audience in the singing of the alma mater. Choir members Beatrice Petzinger and Tarion Young performed the National Anthem. Linda McClarren provided the prelude, processional and recessional as the organist.


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