June 27, 2014

June 27 Presidential Transition Update

To the Guilford College Community:

Next Tuesday morning, Jane Fernandes becomes Guilford College’s ninth president. (This has been referred to by some as a “changing of the guard,” but that metaphor seems not quite to suit.)

Kent Chabotar, who has served Guilford College for 12 years, retires with the thanks and best wishes of the Guilford College community. He will be absent for a period of time, then return next year to teach.

Our trustees’ Transition Committee and the First Year Committee have developed and confirmed with Jane a series of events intended to introduce our new president and integrate her into our communities. In July, she will focus on meeting people on campus and making Ragsdale House her home. On July 11, she will visit with the North Carolina Yearly Meeting-Conservative, which will be meeting on campus. On July 13 and 26, she will greet attendees at Music for a Sunday Evening in the Park and the EMF final concert. On July 19, she speaks to Mary Hobbs Hall alumnae.

In August, Jane will speak at start-of-school events including the Opening Community Meeting on Aug. 19 and Opening Convocation on Aug. 27. Also during this time, she is scheduled to meet Greensboro community leaders and will travel to speak to the North Carolina Yearly Meeting-Friends United in Black Mountain on Aug. 30.

Jane’s lot is to lead Guilford College during interesting, challenging times. There is much for all of us to do – and providing a transformative educational experience for our students only begins the work. Jane herself is briefed and focused. She and the senior leaders of the College are preparing for an important trustees meeting in early October. We know that changes are in store – only the pace and nature of those changes remain to be seen.

The Board of Trustees extends thanks to everyone for helping to welcome Jane Fernandes and her family to Guilford. Jane has a big job. She needs support from all of us. Give her warm greetings Tuesday at the drop-in reception 1:30-3 p.m. in the Gilmer Room or as soon as you first encounter her. Make her glad she is here!

Best wishes for a great summer!

Ed Winslow
Board of Trustees