June 24, 2009

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LEWISBURG, Pa. -- Bucknell University President Brian C. Mitchell has announced his intention to step down as the University's president effective June 30, 2010. || Announcements to Bucknell community from President Mitchell, Board Chair Susan Crawford

"Maryjane and I knew that, whenever we might decide to pursue other goals, we had an obligation to do so at a time that would be fair to this wonderful community," said Mitchell, who has served as Bucknell's 16th president since 2004.

 "We also wanted to give the Board of Trustees appropriate time to conduct a search for the next president, and to ensure however best we could that the momentum of Bucknell continues. With these facts in mind, I have informed the Board of Trustees that effective June 30, 2010, I will step down as president."

Under Mitchell's leadership during the past five years, the University has established a comprehensive strategic plan, The Plan for Bucknell; put in place its most far-reaching campus master plan since the early 1930s; and launched a $400 million comprehensive campaign that has already raised more than $130 million in less than two years, including the most state and federal funding Bucknell has ever raised, more than $17 million.

In addition, during Mitchell's tenure, the University has converted the faculty teaching load from six to five courses per year and reduced the student-faculty ratio to 11:1, hired more than 40 new tenure-track faculty, established a School of Management that will grow out of the current management program, shaped highly successful partnerships to enroll diverse outstanding students, and initiated a wide-ranging series of initiatives to strengthen town-gown relations, including a downtown University bookstore. 

Susan Crawford, chair of the Bucknell Board of Trustees, expressed the University's appreciation to Mitchell and his wife.

"The entire Board, along with the Bucknell community, is grateful to have in Brian Mitchell a president of great energy and vision at a critical time," Crawford said. "He has led the University as it has strategized with considerable scope, and advanced in substantive ways. We are grateful to both Brian and Maryjane for the passion and commitment they have given to Bucknell during the past five years, and that they will continue to provide in the upcoming academic year."

Crawford also expressed appreciation to Mitchell for the transition time he has allowed the University.

"Thanks to their decision to inform us of their plans now, the University will be able to move forward under President Mitchell's continued leadership this coming academic year with focus on the strategic imperatives before us, even as we begin to plan for the next stage in the University's history."

Crawford added that the Board would be discussing over the coming months the process for a national search. 

Contact: Division of Communications