Message of Mimie Helm, Chairman of the Board of Trustees, to the Wheeling Jesuit University Community
Dear Wheeling Jesuit Community,
I write to you with important news. In January, Rick Beyer informed me that he planned to step down as president of Wheeling Jesuit University later this year, when his regular term ends.
The Board is deeply grateful to him for his significant contributions to the university. Under his leadership, WJU has achieved record enrollment, tremendous growth in alumni giving and new academic programs in fine arts, engineering and health sciences.
Typically a change in president involves a national search. We, however, are very fortunate to have the right candidate already on our leadership team. The Board of Trustees is pleased to appoint Reverend James Fleming, SJ, Ph.D., currently the executive vice president of WJU, as the tenth president of Wheeling Jesuit University, effective July 1, 2013.
Fr. Fleming is ideally suited to serve as president of the university. He is a dynamic and visionary leader who possesses a keen knowledge of the university and, obviously, the Jesuit values on which it was founded and continues to operate.
He has forged close relationships with faculty, staff and students, as well as political and community leaders throughout the state. He has been instrumental in guiding the development and implementation of the university's long-term strategic plan, while taking on key operational responsibilities. Fr. Fleming is distinctly qualified to build upon the momentum generated in recent years and to lead the university's continued growth as one of the nation's best liberal arts institutions.
Additional information, including messages from Fr. Fleming and Rick Beyer are can be viewed on this web site. Fr. Jim and Rick will work closely together on the transition. Both will participate in already scheduled gatherings next week with faculty, staff and students.
I am grateful to the Board for its work in selecting a new president, and to the presidents of the Faculty Council and Alumni Council, who were consulted during this process. Please join me in thanking Rick for his leadership and commitment to making WJU the outstanding university it is, and in welcoming Fr. Jim as president.
Mimie Helm '84
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