IU Southeast Magazine - Summer 2014 - page 39

IU Southeast
Summer 2014 37
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Leadership matters.
Today’s IU Southeast students find a beautiful campus with a comprehensive array of degree programs,
cutting edge technology, efficient student services and a superb faculty. But when Floyd McMurray
founded what was then known as the Falls City Area Extension Center – nearly 75 years ago - he had
little more than a desk, a typewriter and a dream that someday an IU degree would be easily accessible to
students in Southern Indiana.
McMurray was followed by Byron Laird, who established an IU Southeast foothold in Jeffersonville’s
Warder Park. Since then, IU Southeast has benefited from a succession of excellent leaders. Ed Crooks
worked with community leaders and a generation of innovative faculty members to transform IU
Southeast into a full-fledged modern university – and move the campus to New Albany. Crooks was
followed by education professor John Reisert, whose curricular expertise established the foundation
of our superb teacher education program, and who served in a transitional leadership role as Interim
Chancellor before the installation of Leon Rand.
Rand and F.C. Richardson were purposeful strategists who worked with long-serving Vice Chancellor for
Academic Affairs, Gil Atnip, to build outstanding academic programs and forge community partnerships
designed to position IU Southeast as Southern Indiana’s intellectual and cultural center. Their vision –
and their urgent focus on building community partnerships - led to the opening of the Ogle Cultural &
Community Center, the development of a nationally recognized School of Business, a new Library, a new
graduate center in Jeffersonville, rapid growth in faculty size and quality and a rich array of excellent
programs in the arts and sciences. In the new century, those long-term strategies bore fruit during the
tenure of Sandra Patterson-Randles, which saw the opening of new residence halls and the introduction
of state-of-the-art technologies that support cutting edge research and technology.
Our campus is at its best when leadership wells up throughout the organization, when faculty, students,
staff, community stakeholders and administrators exert shared ownership of its traditions, values and
Over the last year, IU Southeast has been at its best. Last summer the campus experienced its most
dramatic leadership change in decades when an almost entirely new cast of characters, headed by
Interim Chancellor Barbara Bichelmeyer, assumed new roles. That team challenged the campus and the
community to keep moving forward – and what might have been a lost year became instead an exciting
period of progress and new ideas.
This summer, the installation of Chancellor Ray Wallace marks the end of our year of transition –and
the beginning of an era of transformation. The editorial staff of IU Southeast hopes you’ll enjoy reading
about the people who will lead the way.
--The editorial staff at IU Southeast
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