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Wilson College Forms Presidential Search Committee

Posted: September 14, 2010

9/14/2010 Wilson College has formed a search committee and retained an executive search firm to seek a successor to President Lorna D. Edmundson, who recently announced her retirement, effective June 30, 2011.
DATE: Sept. 14, 2010
CONTACT: Cathy Mentzer, Manager of Media Relations
Phone: 717-264-4141, Ext. 3178

CHAMBERSBURG, Pa. – Wilson College has formed a search committee and retained an executive search firm to seek a successor to President Lorna D. Edmundson, who recently announced her retirement, effective June 30, 2011.

The Wilson College Presidential Search Committee includes members of Wilson’s Board of Trustees and former trustees, alumnae, faculty and staff, as well as a student representative. The 10-member committee is chaired by John W. Gibb, vice chair of the board.

“Few periods in the life of a college are as important as the search for and selection of the president,” Gibb said. “Finding the best possible leader for Wilson depends in large measure on the scope of our search and the extent of the pool of qualified candidates. We recognize that the network of Wilson’s friends offers us the maximum wealth of resources to help us meet this challenge.”

The college has hired Archer-Martin Associates to assist with the search for Wilson’s next president. Archer-Martin, which is based in Nantucket, is an executive search firm serving higher education and nonprofit communities. The firm has assigned a four-person team to work with Wilson College to assist in all aspects of the search process, from recruitment to contract negotiations.

Representatives from Archer-Martin met in late August with Wilson faculty, staff and administrators to gather information and opinions about what qualities they desire in the new Wilson president. In addition, the search committee has invited comments and questions from the Wilson community via email and other routes.

The committee plans to communicate regularly with all Wilson constituencies to keep them informed about the search. In addition, a web page has been created (, where visitors can go for more information and updates.

Wilson Board of Trustees Chair Trudi Warner Blair, a 1976 graduate of the college, said the board plans to take all steps possible to ensure a smooth transition for the next president.

Advertisements for the Wilson presidency have begun to be placed. The next step will be to begin interviewing prospective candidates and develop a list of qualified applicants.

Dr. Edmundson came to Wilson in summer 2001, when former president Gwendolyn Evans Jensen stepped down. During her tenure, the College experienced significant improvements in program quality, deepened its commitment to environmental sustainability and strengthened its financial position, including support and compensation for employees and enhancements to buildings and grounds. In addition, the College opened its new, state-of-the-art Harry R. Brooks Complex for Science, Mathematics and Technology in January 2009 – the first building of its kind in the area to be LEED-certified at the gold level.

Founded in 1869, Wilson College is a liberal arts college dedicated to the education of women. Affiliated with the Presbyterian Church and located in Chambersburg, Pa. Wilson offers bachelor’s degrees in 30 areas and a master’s degree in education. The college’s 2009-10 enrollment in both the College for Women and the Adult Degree Programs was 838 and included students from 20 states and 18 foreign countries.

Wilson College Mission Statement

Wilson is an independent college with a proud history of educating women since 1869 through rigorous study of the liberal arts and sciences. Today, Wilson’s mission also includes women and men enrolled in adult degree and graduate programs. Guided by the Honor Principle and distinguished by its commitment to transformative student growth, Wilson College prepares all of its graduates for fulfilling lives and professions, ethical leadership, and humane stewardship of our communities and our world.

Last Updated: June 30, 2011