John McCardell, college professor and emeritus president of Middlebury College, will not be returning to Middlebury for the 2010-2011 school year. Today, the College announced that McCardell, who joined the history department here in 1976, has accepted a nomination to become Sewanee’s 16th Vice Chancellor and President.
In a press release, President Ron Liebowitz thanked McCardell and his wife, Bonnie, for their service to the community over the years. Wrote Liebowitz, “The College also owes a debt of gratitude to Bonnie McCardell, who has long played an active role in the Middlebury community, particularly in the areas of child care and education. In 2004, she and John received an Honorary Alumni Plaque Award from the Alumni Association to highlight their many years and multiple dimensions of service, and in 2009, they both received honorary degrees from the College.” (For Sewanee’s press release on McCardell, click here.)
Though I am a sophomore and have only known Professor McCardell personally for a semester, I know that his presence here will be sorely missed. Most recently, McCardell has gained national attention for his founding of Choose Responsibility and his involvement in the Amethyst Initiative. According to Sewanee’s press release, McCardell will step down as the president of Choose Responsibility once he assumes his new position, but will still “remain active in the issue [while] continuing to serve on the organization’s board and maintaining a leadership role in expanding the Amethyst Initiative in higher education.”
From all of us at MiddBlog: Good luck, Professor!
UPDATE: In a personal letter to friends, McCardell and his wife, Bonnie, had this to say about Sewanee/The University of the South:
Now, some 150 years later, Sewanee finds itself at a moment of great opportunity. It has just successfully completed a $200 million capital campaign. Its physical plant is in excellent shape. Its faculty and student body are strong. It aspires to greater things. And, perhaps recalling its own history, it has turned to Vermont for its new leadership.
Sewanee’s Southern and Episcopal roots give it a special appeal to us. Its School of Theology, its Writing Program and School of Letters, make it a genuine university. And its stunningly beautiful 13,000 acres make it a place not only where God’s handiwork can in all seasons be discerned and glorified but also where those who would commit to serious study of the environment have all about them a most spectacular laboratory.