November 22, 2013 | More Presidential Coverage
The Albion College Board of Trustees has announced the appointment of Mauri A. Ditzler as the College’s 16th president. Currently president of Monmouth College in Monmouth, Ill., Ditzler will assume his new post July 1.
“Mauri Ditzler has shown himself to be a talented and skillful leader throughout a career that includes impressive achievements in teaching, research, and administration,” said J. Donald Sheets, chair of Albion’s Board of Trustees. “He is passionate about liberal arts education and connecting students’ learning experiences in the classroom with the wider world. His vision, intellect, and ability to rally campus constituencies around common goals make him an outstanding choice to lead Albion College forward.”
Since becoming Monmouth College’s president in 2005, Ditzler has spearheaded initiatives that have emphasized academic excellence, resulted in innovations in the curriculum, produced positive trends in enrollment management, and strengthened the relationship between the college and its home community.
“I have known and respected Albion College for decades,” Ditzler said, “but until I first visited our beautiful campus two weeks ago I didn’t really understand its special character. I discovered an intellectually engaged faculty deeply dedicated to the liberal arts. I met a staff whose love for the College translated to an even greater love for its students. I saw a host community with remarkable potential. And, on a Friday evening walk-about I encountered students who were confident, friendly, and actively engaged in learning. I knew immediately that this was a College I would love. I look forward with joy to beginning our work together.” (Video: Dr. Ditzler introduces himself to the Albion College community.)
Ditzler led a strategic planning process at Monmouth that preceded the implementation of the largest capital campaign in the college’s history. Titled “Fulfilling the Promise,” the plan led to a recommitment to the college’s founding principles. Each of the campaign projects was inspired by a founding principle, repurposed for the 21st century. During the campaign, he led fundraising for construction of a $40-million center for integrated programs in science and business. Two residence halls and improvements to athletic facilities were also completed during his presidency.
Throughout his career, Ditzler has been committed to building healthy relationships between colleges and their host communities. At Monmouth, he encouraged the development of programs to make civic engagement a focal point of the curriculum and launched an initiative titled “Midwest Matters,” designed to highlight the role that the local community and region can play in addressing the problem of global food security. Under his leadership, the college partnered with the city on several economic development projects.
Ditzler currently chairs the executive committee of the Associated Colleges of the Midwest, a 14-college consortium including Monmouth, and he is a member of the Presidents Council for NCAA Division III. He is a past chair of the Association of Presbyterian Colleges and Universities. Richard Longworth, senior fellow of the Chicago Council on Global Affairs, included Ditzler with the presidents of Michigan State University and the University of Michigan in a list of eight leaders “who are setting the Midwest’s agenda for the future.”
Prior to joining Monmouth, Ditzler served as dean of the college at Wabash College (Ind.) from 1999 to 2005 where he developed and helped raise over $20 million in initial funding for a national Center of Inquiry in the Liberal Arts and played a role in the design and construction of numerous academic facilities. As dean of arts and sciences at Millikin University (Ill.) from 1994 to 1999, he advanced curricular reforms, promoted undergraduate research, and helped envision and raise funds for a new science building. During a 15-year tenure as a chemistry professor at the College of the Holy Cross (Mass.), he led a team that created a chemistry curriculum that became a widely adopted model in the field and earned him a national teaching award. He also published regularly in his research specialty, often with students as co-authors, and obtained significant funding for research and laboratory facilities.
A summa cum laude graduate of Wabash College where he majored in chemistry and speech, Ditzler earned a Ph.D. in analytical chemistry from Duke University. He is a member of Phi Beta Kappa and the science honorary Sigma Xi. He and his wife, Judith Ditzler, have three grown children, Meggan, Mark, and Lorin.