McKendree University President Signs New Contract Extension Ahead of Bicentennial

Photo of President Dobbins(LEBANON, Ill., February 17, 2023) – The McKendree University Board of Trustees, under the direction of Chairman Dan Lett ‘91, are pleased to announce a multi-year contract extension to President Daniel Dobbins ’81 through June 30, 2026.

“We are thrilled with the accomplishments at McKendree University over the past three years,” Lett said. “Despite the challenges facing higher education, McKendree University has made significant progress and continues to live out its mission. We are pleased that President Dan Dobbins will continue his successful leadership of the University, and we look forward to all McKendree University will accomplish in the coming years.”

President Dobbins is McKendree University’s 33rd president and is a 1981 graduate of the institution. He became president on January 1, 2020; however, the coronavirus outbreak postponed his official inauguration until McKendree’s 193rd Founders Day in 2021. President Dobbins is married to fellow alumna, Mickey (Macaluso) Dobbins ’81.

Under President Dobbins’ direction, McKendree University has accomplished much, including developing and launching the UNITED strategic plan, launching the Clear Path admissions strategy, attaining a successful Higher Learning Commission Year 4 Accreditation assurance review, providing a major transformation to Holman Library’s space with a learning and technology center, and much more. The University also continues to garner local and national prestige, including nods from U.S. News & World Report, Nursing Schools Almanac and more. Throughout his presidency, President Dobbins has been active in numerous professional and civic organizations, including serving as Chair of the Education Committee of the Leadership Council of Southwest Illinois, Executive Committee Member of the Federation of Independent Illinois Colleges and Universities (FIICU) and Treasurer of the Great Lakes Valley Conference (GLVC).

After hearing of his extension, President Dobbins said, “It continues to be one of Mickey’s and my greatest honors to serve McKendree University in this capacity. While we couldn’t be prouder of what we have accomplished, we have much more to achieve together as One McKendree.”

The announcement comes in time for the University’s 195th year, which will be celebrated at an all-new level during McKendree’s inaugural Founders Week. During this time, McKendreans near and far will come together throughout the week to celebrate the countless accomplishments the University and its community have achieved, remember their roots and give back so that future Bearcats may continue to learn and thrive.

In 2028, McKendree University will celebrate its 200th anniversary as Illinois’s first institution of higher learning. Ahead of this auspicious date, President Dobbins is pleased to announce the formation of the 2028 Bicentennial Steering Committee, which will be charged with developing programming, special events and brand recognition to commemorate this historic event. The committee will be comprised of University administration, trustees, alumni board, faculty, staff, students and community members.

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