October 19, 2018

Presidential Announcement

Dear Goucher Community,

Today I write to inform you of my decision to step down as President on June 30, 2019. By that date, I will have been in higher education administration for 20 years at four different public and private institutions, including five years at Goucher. It has been enormously satisfying to devote my time over the past two decades to supporting others through my work in higher education administration. I believe it is time for a change of direction for me personally, as I remain deeply passionate about my research, scholarship, music, and teaching. I will leave Goucher at the end of this fiscal year to focus on that and particularly to spend more time finishing my next book, which is largely about the work we have done together at Goucher.

There is never a good time to leave and this was not an easy decision for me. Goucher has a long and distinguished past and I am confident that it has even greater days ahead of it. I am very pleased with what we have accomplished together and believe we have done something extraordinary—more students, a new curriculum, new facilities, moved buildings (literally!), increased diversity, a 0% tuition increase, the Goucher Video Application, launching a $100M campaign, additional sports, new programs, new centers, dozens of new systems, and technology upgrades. It has been a whirlwind. I thank all of you for your willingness to look at so many innovative ways we could help students succeed and still stay true to our mission.

Goucher is well positioned to continue on the path we have undertaken together. Until my last day, I will continue to make every decision with only the best interests of Goucher and all of Goucher’s students, faculty, staff, and alumnae/i in mind. We will continue our full embrace of the liberal arts, as we work to prepare students for the careers of the future. We will continue enhancing Goucher’s curriculum through our program revitalization and focusing on student success. We will continue our mission of access to an affordable education. We will continue strengthening the foundations of a more cohesive and inclusive college community with spaces and programs that promote equity and relationships, resilience, and reflection. I am committed to assisting with a smooth presidential transition and to assuring steady progress on Goucher’s strategic goals.

I owe more than I can say to the Goucher Board of Trustees. I have served under three fabulous and gracious chairs, in Norma Lynn Fox, Miriam Katowitz, and Ruth Lenrow, who have each been tremendous partners and offered encouragement, sage advice, and enthusiasm at every turn. The trust and support from trustees, alums, and donors has been overwhelming: it was always all about Goucher and I know this good work will continue.

I have never lost my love of music, teaching, and indeed the scholarship and research of teaching and learning. The moments of teaching and playing with students at Goucher have been brief, but reminded me of how much I miss these interactions. I am blessed with a marriage of love and friendship and this has been a consuming job for both of us. I have given 100% of myself to Goucher and to other administrative work for 20 years, and now, while I still can, I simply need to return to the other things that bring me joy and meaning.

Goucher is a unique and special place and Kimberly and I have been so blessed to call it our home. I am deeply grateful for my time here and especially for the support that so many of you have offered on a daily basis. Your faith, compassion, and verve have been motivating and inspiring. I have only been a temporary steward of this important institution and I share the common hope that each of us leaves Goucher better positioned to thrive than when we arrived. I hope that all of our best efforts continue to bring the best for Goucher and all of her citizens.

José