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Jan. 25 - Hastings College President Phillip Dudley Announces Retirement, Effective July 2011
Dr. Phillip Dudley, president of Hastings College since 2000 and economics professor for nearly 40 years, has announced plans to retire from the presidency effective July 2011. Dudley informed the Board of Trustees of his decision at a meeting January 22. The Board will launch a nationwide search for his successor in the coming months.
“Phil Dudley’s lasting legacy at Hastings College will be that he made serving students the most important priority,” said Hal Dittmer, chair of the Hastings College Board of Trustees. “As president, he has ensured that service to students is the primary focus of the college. The Board is deeply grateful for his leadership, his accomplishments and his passionate commitment to Hastings College and its students.”
Dudley joined Hastings College in 1973 as assistant professor of economics and business. He was promoted to associate professor in 1977 and full professor in 2002. From 1977 to 1983, he also served as director for the Hastings College Center of Economic Education. Recognized for his leadership skills, Dudley in 1979 was named assistant to the president and in 1982 vice president of the college and secretary to the Board of Trustees. He was inaugurated as president in 2000.
“By the conclusion of the 2010-2011 academic year, I will have served as president of Hastings College for more than a decade,” Dudley said. “It has been a wonderful privilege working with such superb students and colleagues, but the timing is right for the college to transition to new leadership for the future. Hastings College is in a solid position academically and financially. Over the next 18 months I will work to establish an even stronger foundation for the next president.”
Following Dudley’s retirement from the presidency, he and his spouse Donna will move to Omaha where he will work for the Hastings College Foundation, which manages the college’s fund-raising and alumni activities.
“During 37 years as an administrator and professor, I have taught or worked with nearly one-half of Hastings College’s alumni, and I have met many other alumni who graduated in the years before I joined the college,” Dudley said. “I am excited to reconnect with alumni and friends across the country and work with Foundation President Gary Freeman in raising funds to support the college.”
Dudley, Hastings College’s 14th president, is highly regarded for his integrity, leadership skills and engaging personality. He places students at the heart of his educational philosophy. In the 2008 Noel-Levitz Student Satisfaction Inventory, Hastings College students expressed greater satisfaction at the highest statistically significant level than did students from a national comparison group on 70 of 73 items related to academic programs, student services and campus life.
In 2005 Dudley became only the third college or university president to receive the Ralph S. Brown Award for Shared Governance from the American Association of University Professors (AAUP). The Faculty Senate and Hastings College chapter of AAUP nominated Dudley based on his work in creating a campus environment that engenders trust, collegiality and mutual respect. In 2008, Hastings College was recognized as a Great College to Work For by The Chronicle of Higher Education.
Major accomplishments during Dudley’s presidency include construction of the Osborne Family Sports Complex, Barrett Family Alumni Center, Bronco Village Apartments and Morrison-Reeves Science Center, as well as improvements to the college’s infrastructure and technology. Alumni giving has increased from 16% in 2000 to 32% in 2009, and the college has received grant funding from such national foundations as the Lilly Endowment, Hearst, Kresge, Teagle and Arthur Vining Davis.
In 2005 Hastings College received the maximum 10-year reaccreditation from the North Central Association for Colleges and Schools following a comprehensive self-assessment and site visit by an accreditation team. In 2004-05 Dudley led the college through a five-year Strategic Planning Process encompassing academic programs, facilities and technology, finance and fund raising, marketing and communications, enrollment management and student life.
With Dudley’s support, service-learning has become an integral part of campus life. Since 2004, students have served more than 100,000 hours locally, across the United States and abroad. Hastings College has been named to the President’s Higher Education Community Service Honor Roll two consecutive years.
The college’s academic program has been expanded with the addition of new majors in biochemistry, biopsychology, wildlife biology, women’s and gender studies, exercise science and sports management. The college has also implemented a bachelor of arts/bachelor of science in nursing dual degree program with Creighton University and Mary Lanning Memorial Hospital and collaborative majors and partnerships with Central Community College.
Dudley served on the Council of Independent Colleges (CIC) Board of Directors from 2006 to 2009 and was treasurer of its Executive Committee. A gubernatorial appointee to the Nebraska Educational Telecommunications Commission, Dudley is a past president of the Hastings Public Schools Board of Education and board member of the Mary Lanning Health Care Foundation and Hastings Economic Development Corporation. He served on the local coordinating committee that led a successful campaign for a new Hastings Middle School. He is an elder and session member at First Presbyterian Church in Hastings.
A native of Cheney, Kan., Dudley received his undergraduate degree in mathematics and business/economics from Southwestern College in Winfield, Kan. He earned his master’s degree in economics, with emphasis in public finance and economic theory, at Wichita State University. He completed doctoral work in economics at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln, where his studies focused on quantitative economics, urban-regional economics, industrial organization and personnel management.
Dudley and his spouse Donna are parents of three Hastings College graduates, Phil, Peter and Paul Dudley. Two daughters-in-law, Sandra and Stefanie Dudley, also graduated from Hastings College.