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Wednesday, September 27, 2017

President Dudley-Eshbach Announces She Is Stepping Down June 30

Salisbury University President Janet Dudley-EshbachSALISBURY, MD---Dr. Janet Dudley-Eshbach, the president of Salisbury University, today announced her decision to step down effective June 30, 2018.

Dudley-Eshbach was appointed SU’s eighth president in 2000, the first woman to hold the office. She is the University System of Maryland’s longest-serving female president and is the second longest-tenured president in SU history.

“I first knew Janet when I was President of Towson University,” said USM Chancellor Robert Caret.  “She was (and still is) a fierce champion for Salisbury University. Her energy, passion, intelligence and humor marked her as someone whose voice would be heard.  When I returned as Chancellor, those aspects of her character had not changed, but she also can speak eloquently about the significance of public universities everywhere, particularly their missions to help all students and educate an informed public. She has made higher education her life, and SU, the University System of Maryland, and the citizens of Maryland, are better for it.”  

“Change is good, for institutions and individuals,” Dudley-Eshbach said in a letter to campus. “Eighteen years is a long tenure for any university president, especially in today’s world.

“On reflection, I am immensely grateful to everyone associated with Salisbury University.  We’ve accomplished so very much together, and my own successes would not have been possible without the support and dedication of thousands of staff, faculty, students, alumni, donors and members of SU’s many affiliated boards.

“I have wanted to time my decision in a way that fits the internal needs of the University,” she said.  “I will not be retiring, but looking forward to new opportunities.”

In an agreement with the USM chancellor and regents, she will serve as a special advisor to the University during a sabbatical year which begins July 1, 2018, assisting her successor with transitional matters, supporting fundraising efforts and engaging in special projects, “so long as these activities do not interfere with the primary purpose of my sabbatical,” she added, “which is preparation to resume service as an active member of the faculty beginning the 2019-20 academic year.

“I am greatly looking forward to returning to my first love – teaching, mentoring students, and scholarship.  I also hope to make more time for family, music, reading and other interests.” The president is bilingual and said “I wish to be involved in community service activities and would like to work with our region’s Spanish-speaking community, particularly those who may need help with English language skills.”

A GLOBAL VISION

Dudley-Eshbach’s leadership has been transformational, with a strategic vision that has resulted in the University’s growth in size, reputation and private support. When she arrived, the campus had a student population of 6,400. Now, it is over 8,700.  As a Latin American literature and Spanish-language scholar, she was profoundly moved by her own study abroad experiences and exposure to different cultures and ethnicities. She personally funded a scholarship to assist SU students wishing to study in Latin America and cut the ribbon on SU’s Center for International Education and English Language Institute. Today, the campus attracts students from over 60 countries. Earlier this year, SU was recognized as a national leader in its class for study abroad programming, according to the 2016 Open Doors Report on International Educational Exchange.

Walking the walk, Dudley-Eshbach has joined students on spring break service trips to areas such as Aguascalientes, Mexico, and has served on educational delegations to Cuba. Her passion for international study and “Transformative Love of Hispanidad” have been showcased by The Hispanic Outlook in Higher Education.

When she first came to Salisbury, she said she wanted the campus to be more reflective of the demographics of Maryland.  Under her leadership, the number of minority students has more than tripled with one in four now from diverse backgrounds (up from 11 percent in 2000).  

Through joint programs the campus now reaches out to students at five satellite sites throughout Maryland and Ramstein Air Force Base in Germany (in partnership with the University of Maryland University College). These centers allow students who may not be able to afford or find it impossible to live in Salisbury the opportunity to attend.

Inclusion at Salisbury has taken different forms:  The Rick Dudley Scholarship was the first endowed fund in the USM dedicated to graduate students with disabilities.

Years before controversies swirling around Confederate memorials, the President supported the creation of a larger-than-life bronze sculpture celebrating Harriet Tubman, believed to be the first commemorative three-dimensional likeness honoring the “Moses of her people” on Tubman’s native Eastern Shore.

COMMUNITY PARTNERSHIPS

Strategic partnerships and the elevation of town-gown relationships have been part of Dudley-Eshbach’s vision.  “Were it not for the support of the area community, SU would not be the exceptional institution it is today," she said.  Outreach and civic engagement are now a pillar of an SU education.

The University, for example, is playing a highly visible role in downtown Salisbury’s renaissance.   Following the private donation of the $4.4 million Gallery Building to the SU Foundation in 2015, the University relocated its downtown art gallery there.  Other SU centers slated to follow include the Eastern Shore Regional GIS Cooperative and a new Center for Entrepreneurship, funded by another $5.5 million private gift.

Dudley-Eshbach also established a Town-Gown Council, and recently a Center for Extended and Lifelong Learning, forging additional community ties.

For her civic commitment, in 2015 the United Way of the Lower Eastern Shore awarded her its prestigious Jim Barrett Community Leadership Award for exemplifying philanthropic leadership. Maryland Comptroller Peter Franchot also personally nominated and presented her with the 2015 William Donald Schaefer Helping People Award for Wicomico County for her transformative impact on the University and city.

FISCAL SUCCESSES AND PHYSICAL GROWTH

Dudley-Eshbach has been successful in getting more equitable state funding for SU and in attracting private support, including several multi-million dollar gifts, to foster dynamic changes, from new buildings to new academic programs.  The margin of excellence she has pursued for many campus initiatives would have been impossible without private philanthropy. She, in turn, has been generous, endowing the new Faculty Center in the Patricia R. Guerrieri Academic Commons (GAC). With her husband, Joe Eshbach, she was inducted into the Sea Gull Society (for University donors whose cumulative gifts exceed $100,000) and the Holloway Society (for those making a planned gift).  

During her tenure, the SU Foundation’s net assets have grown from $27.1 million to $74.7 million, an increase of 175 percent.  The capital campaign, “Taking Excellence to New Heights,” in 2012, exceeded its target of $25 million by nearly $15 million. The funds have supported student scholarships, faculty development and often been the catalyst for campus expansion.

The University skyline has been transformed by state-of-the art facilities including Conway Hall, Perdue Hall, the Henson Medical Simulation Center, the Sea Gull Square residence-retail complex, the campus’s first parking garage, renovated fitness center and residence halls, and the re-configuration of the University athletics complex with new softball and baseball stadiums, soccer and intramural fields and tennis courts, all grounded by Sea Gull Stadium, now lauded as one of the best in NCAA Division III athletics.    

The jewel in the crown has been the award-winning Guerrieri Academic Commons, a $117 million center and library-of-the-future which has elevated student use to record levels. The GAC recently dedicated its Brown and Church Carillon, one of only 60 such traditional instruments nationwide on a university campus (the only one at a Maryland university) and praised by carillonneurs from across the country for the beauty of its tone. It was made possible by a $2.4 million private gift.

Altogether, during Dudley-Eshbach’s presidency, the University has expanded from 59 buildings to 89, with some $350 million in new facilities.  The footprint of the campus also has grown significantly from 114 acres in 2000 to some 220 acres today.   

As a champion for SU in Annapolis and Adelphi (home to the USM), and with careful fiscal management on campus, Dudley-Eshbach has been able to bolster operating budgets, which have grown since 2000, from $70 million to $183.3 million.  Faculty and staff salaries are no longer below the median at SU’s peer institutions. University Business magazine has honored the campus with “Models of Efficiency” awards.  With almost 1,800 employees, it has become one of the region’s largest employers, making an economic impact of nearly half a billion dollars annually.

ACADEMIC ACHIEVEMENT

During her tenure, nearly a third of SU’s current majors and the campus’ first doctorates, in nursing practice and education, have been developed.  She established an Honors College, which recruited 12 percent of the entering class this fall. Complementing Honors is a new Nationally Competitive Fellowships Office, with four SU students winning Fulbright scholarships this year.  In 2015-2016, the U.S. State Department named SU among the nation’s top producers of Fulbright Scholars.

She has supported independent student research and SU is the only campus in Maryland to have hosted the National Conference on Undergraduate Research, and one of the few comprehensive universities to have done so twice.

SU’s online M.B.A. program was ranked among the nation’s best by U.S. News & World Report. Its Perdue School entrepreneurship programs, which include a million dollar grant from the Ratcliffe Foundation, have mentored and funded a generation of entrepreneurs.   In education, professional development school partnerships with local public schools have earned national recognition.  Salisbury was the only institution in Maryland and one of only 44 nationally selected by the American Association of State Colleges and Universities to participate in its “Re-Imagining the First Year of College” project. The campuses selected “exhibit strong leadership and other qualities that are conducive to effecting broad-scale and sustainable change,” said George Mehaffy, AASCU vice president.

PROTECTING THE ENVIRONMENT

Committed to sustainability, Dudley-Eshbach has fostered such initiatives as a new solar parking canopy, which generates enough electricity to power three residence halls; a “green roof” on the GAC of drought-tolerant plants filtering rainwater and helping cool the building; and a Green Fund to help realize student sustainability proposals such as the campus’ new apiary. SU’s beautiful grounds, a designated national arboretum, has earned state and national honors, and the U.S. Green Building Council has awarded Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) certification to 10 of the University’s new and renovated buildings in the past nine years.  The President received the Newton Marasco Foundation’s inaugural Leading Environmental Stewardship Award.

NATIONAL RECOGNITION

Every year during her tenure, SU has been one of The Princeton Review’s Best Colleges and U.S. News & World Report’s “Best Regional Universities in the North.” The campus also is consistently named a “Best Value” by Forbes, Money and Washington Monthly.

Her expertise and opinions have been featured in such national publications as Public Purpose, The Chronicle of Higher Education and University Business. She has served on the boards of directors for the American Association of State Colleges and Universities and the American Council on Education, and is active in the Hispanic Association of Colleges and Universities. Slate spotlighted her among top university executives who understood the importance of engaging with students.

The Maryland Daily Record three times named Dudley-Eshbach one of Maryland’s Top 100 Women, inducting her into its Circle of Excellence. The newspaper named her an “Influential Marylander,” and she was the first university president honored as one of its “Most Admired CEOs” in 2012.

Prior to her arrival at SU, she served as president of Fairmont State University, the largest of the nine institutions in the State College System of West Virginia, and was provost at the State University of New York (SUNY) College at Potsdam. Her teaching career began at Allegheny and Goucher colleges. A Phi Beta Kappa graduate of Indiana University Bloomington, she earned her Ph.D. from El Colegio de Mexico.

Dudley-Eshbach enjoys telling the story of her mother, a high school French teacher, who was shocked when her daughter choose to major in Spanish. “What can you do with a degree in Spanish?” she asked her daughter.  On the 10th anniversary celebration of her presidency at SU, she told her mother, “This is what you can do with a degree in Spanish.”

For more information visit the SU website at salisbury.edu or call 410-543-6030.

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Biography
Dr. Janet Dudley-Eshbach
President of Salisbury University

Janet Dudley-Eshbach was appointed the eighth president of Salisbury University in 2000, the first woman to hold the office. Today, she is the University System of Maryland’s longest-serving female president and is the second longest-tenured president in SU history. Her leadership has been transformational, with a strategic vision that has resulted in the institution’s growth in size, reputation and private support.

When Dudley-Eshbach arrived, the campus had a student population of 6,400. Now, the student body is over 8,700. She has been successful in getting more equitable state funding for SU, as well as private contributions, including several multi-million dollar gifts to foster dynamic changes, from new buildings to academic programs.

A Latin American literature and Spanish-language scholar who is fluent in Spanish, she was profoundly moved by study abroad experiences and exposure to different cultures and ethnicities. Under her leadership, the number of minority students has more than tripled and one in four now are from diverse backgrounds. She cut the ribbon on a Center for International Education and an English Language Institute. Today, SU’s campus attracts students from over 60 countries. She has joined students on spring break service trips to areas such as Aguascalientes, Mexico, and has served on educational delegations to Cuba. Her passion for international study and “Transformative Love of Hispanidad” have been showcased by The Hispanic Outlook in Higher Education.

Strategic partnerships and town-gown relationships also are part of Dudley-Eshbach’s vision. In 2015, the United Way of the Lower Eastern Shore awarded her its prestigious Jim Barrett Community Leadership Award for exemplifying philanthropic leadership. Maryland Comptroller Peter Franchot also personally nominated and presented her with the 2015 William Donald Schaefer Helping People Award for Wicomico County for her transformative impact on the University and city. The net assets of the SU Foundation have increased 175 percent to some $74.7 million. She is well-known for her support of shared governance.

During her tenure, nearly a third of SU’s current majors and the campus’ first doctorates, in nursing practice and education, have been developed. The University skyline has been transformed by state-of-the art facilities including Conway Hall, Perdue Hall, the Richard A. Henson Medical Simulation Center, the Sea Gull Square residence-retail high-rise, a new Sea Gull Stadium and major improvements to the athletics complex, and the Patricia R. Guerrieri Academic Commons. Altogether, the University has expanded with some $350 million in new facilities. A front-page Baltimore Sun feature highlighted SU’s growth in “size, reputation, ambition.” With almost 1,800 employees, it has become one of the region’s largest employers with an economic impact of nearly half a billion dollars annually.

Committed to sustainability, Dudley-Eshbach has fostered such campus initiatives as Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) certification of 10 new and renovated buildings, a solar parking lot and a student Green Fund. SU’s beautiful grounds, a designated national arboretum, also has earned state and national honors.

Every year during her tenure, SU has been one of The Princeton Review’s Best Colleges and U.S. News & World Report’s “Best Regional Universities in the North.”  The campus also is consistently named a “Best Value” by Forbes, Money and Washington Monthly. Her expertise and opinions have been featured in such national publications as Public Purpose, University Business and The Chronicle of Higher Education. She has served on boards of directors for the American Association of State Colleges and Universities, and the American Council on Education, and is active in the Hispanic Association of Colleges and Universities.

The Daily Record three times named Dudley-Eshbach one of Maryland’s Top 100 Women, inducting her into its Circle of Excellence. The newspaper twice named her an “Influential Marylander,” and she was the first university president honored as one of its “Most Admired CEOs” in 2012. Prior to her arrival at SU, she served as president of Fairmont State University in West Virginia, and she held faculty and administrative positions at three other private and public colleges and universities. A Phi Beta Kappa graduate of Indiana University Bloomington, she earned her Ph.D. from El Colegio de Mexico.

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Dr. Janet Dudley-Eshbach
Highlighted Accomplishments
2000-2018

  • Served since 2000, longest serving female president in USM history, first female president of SU and second longest tenure of any SU President.

Academic Achievement

  • Grew the campus from 6,400 students in 2000 to 8,700 students in 2017.
  • Oversaw creation of almost a third of SU’s majors and the first two doctoral programs.
  • Established the Honors College, which recruited 12% of the entering class this fall.
  • Established the Nationally Competitive Fellowships Office; four SU students were awarded Fulbright fellowships this fall.
  • SU named among the nation’s top producers of Fulbright Scholars in 2015-2016 by the U.S. State Department.
  • Online M.B.A. program ranked among the nation’s best by U.S. News & World Report.
  • Perdue School entrepreneurship programs, supported by a million dollar grant from the Ratcliffe Foundation, have mentored and funded a generation of entrepreneurs.
  • SU the only institution in Maryland and one of only 44 nationwide selected by the American Association of State Colleges and Universities to participate in its “Reimagining the First Year of College” project.
  • SU ranked one of The Princeton Review’s Best Colleges and U.S. News & World Report’s “Best Regional Universities in the North” every year during her tenure.
  • The campus is consistently named a “Best Value” by Forbes, Money and Washington Monthly.
  • Her expertise and opinions featured in such national publications as Public Purpose, The Chronicle of Higher Education and University Business.
  • Served on the boards of directors for the American Association of State Colleges and Universities and the American Council on Education.
  • Slate spotlighted her among top university executives who understood the importance of engaging with students.
  • Daily Record three times named her one of Maryland’s Top 100 Women, inducting her into its Circle of Excellence, and as an “Influential Marylander.” She was the first university president honored as one of its “Most Admired CEOs” in 2012.

A Global Vision & Focus on Diversity

  • Created SU’s Center for International Education and English Language Institute.
  • Grew the international student population to include students in 2017 from over 60 countries.
  • Active in the Hispanic Association of Colleges and Universities.
  • Served on educational delegations to Cuba.
  • Profiled in The Hispanic Outlook in Higher Education for “Transformative Love of Hispanidad.”
  • Personally funded a scholarship program for students to study in Latin America.
  • SU was recognized as a national leader in its class for study abroad programming, according to the 2016 Open Doors Report on International Educational Exchange.
  • A focused emphasis on diversity grew the number of minority students from 11 percent in 2000 to 25% in 2017.
  • Expanded academic program offerings to five satellite locations in Maryland and Ramstein Air Force Base in Germany (in partnership with University of Maryland University College).
  • Created The Rick Dudley Scholarship, the first endowed fund in the USM dedicated to graduate students with disabilities.
  • Supported the creation of a larger-than-life bronze sculpture celebrating Harriet Tubman, believed to be the first commemorative three-dimensional likeness honoring the “Moses of her people” on Tubman’s native Eastern Shore.

Community Partnerships

  • Created SU’s Town Gown Council.
  • Established SU presence in Downtown Salisbury first with creation of the Downtown Art Galleries and now with creation underway of the Center for Entrepreneurship in the donated Plaza Gallery building with the assistance of a $5.5 million private gift.
  • With almost 1,800 employees, SU has become one of the region’s largest employers, making an economic impact of nearly half a billion dollars annually.
  • 2015 United Way of the Lower Eastern Shore awarded her its prestigious Jim Barrett Community Leadership Award for exemplifying philanthropic leadership.
  • 2015 William Donald Schaefer Helping People Award for Wicomico County from Maryland State Comptroller Peter Franchot.

Fiscal Successes and Physical Growth

  • Grew SU Foundation’s net assets from $27.1 million to $74.7 million, an increase of 175 percent.
  • “Taking Excellence to New Heights” capital campaign exceeded its $25 million target, raising an additional $15 million supporting student scholarships, faculty development and other critical needs.
  • She personally endowed the new Faculty Center in the Patricia R. Guerrieri Academic Commons. With her husband, Joe Eshbach, she was inducted into the Sea Gull Society (for University donors whose cumulative gifts exceed $100,000) and the Holloway Society (for those making a planned gift).  
  • $350 million in new facilities from 59 to 89 buildings and expanded the campus footprint from 114 acres in 2000 to 220 acres today.
  • New facilities include Conway Hall, Perdue Hall, the Henson Simulation Center, the Sea Gull Square residence-retail complex, the first parking garage on campus, renovated fitness center and residence halls, and the award-winning Guerrieri Academic Commons.
  • Reconfigured the athletic complex including new softball and baseball stadiums, soccer and intramural fields and tennis courts, all grounded by Sea Gull stadium, now lauded as one of the best in NCAA Division III athletics.
  • Bolstered operating budgets from $70 million in 2000 to $183.3 million today.
  • SU honored by University Business magazine with the “Models of Efficiency” award.
  • Recent environmental projects include a new solar parking canopy, a living “green roof” on the Guerrieri Academic Commons, a Green Fund to support student sustainability proposals, continued support for SU as a designated national arboretum and Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) certification by the U.S. Green Building Council to 10 of the University’s new and renovated buildings in the past nine years.
  • Honored with the Newton Marasco Foundation’s inaugural Leading Environmental Stewardship Award.

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SU Presidents 1925-Present

  • Dr. William J. Holloway, 1925-1934
  • Mr. Thomas J. Caruthers (Acting Principal), 1934-1935
  • Dr. Jefferson D. Blackwell, 1935-1955
  • Dr. Wilbur Devilbiss, 1955-1968
  • Dr. Walter Douglas Smith, 1968-1970
  • Dr. Norman C. Crawford, 1970-1979
  • Dr. Nayland Page (Acting President), 1979-1980
  • Dr. Thomas E. Bellavance, 1980-1995
  • Dr. K. Nelson Butler (Interim President), 1995-1996
  • Dr. William C. Merwin, 1996-1999
  • Dr. Joel Jones (Interim President), 1999-2000
  • Dr. Janet Dudley-Eshbach, 2000-present

 


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