NKU President Geoffrey Mearns leaving to become president at Ball State

01/24/2017 03:47 PM

HIGHLAND HEIGHTS – Northern Kentucky University President Geoffrey Mearns will be leaving Kentucky to become the new president at Ball State University.

On Tuesday, Mearns was officially named the new president of the Hoosier school.

Mearns, whose contract expires on July 31, arrived at NKU in August 2012, and expressed his appreciation to the NKU community in a released statement.

“For nearly five years, it has been my privilege and honor to serve as the president of Northern Kentucky University,” Mearns said. “Together, we have achieved real and lasting change on behalf of our 14,000 students, and we have also built a strong foundation for generations of future Norse. Now, with all of our children out of the home, we have decided it is time to embark upon a new chapter in our own lives.”

Soon after arriving at NKU in August 2012, Mearns led the development of a new five-year strategic plan, Fuel the Flame, helping guide NKU to its 50th anniversary in 2018 and ensure the continued development of innovative academic programs across NKU’s six colleges to break down barriers between disciplines and emphasize a trans-disciplinary approach to solving real-world problems.

In 2018, NKU will also open a new Health Innovation Center. This new academic facility is the result of Mearns’ successful advocacy efforts in the state capital, where in 2014 he secured a $97 million appropriation from the Kentucky General Assembly, according to a press release.

He’s also overseen the renovation and expansion of the Campus Recreation Center and the transition to NCAA Division I athletics.

NKU Board of Regent Chairman Rich Boehne expressed his appreciation in a released statement for Mearn’s efforts at NKU.

“On behalf of the Board of Regents, I would like to thank Geoff for his tireless work to move our university forward over the past five years,” said Boehne. “Under his strong and steady leadership, we have achieved new heights in academic success, advocacy, and athletics. We are truly on the rise as we prepare to celebrate our 50th anniversary in 2018, and his impact on NKU will be felt for generations to come.”

More information surrounding the transition at NKU will be announced over the coming weeks, including the timing of Mearns’ departure, the naming of an interim president and the creation of a search committee.


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