Berea College president Lyle Roelofs announces retirement set for 2023

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Berea College President Lyle Roelofs will retire from the college in June 2023, the school announced Monday.

Roelofs, the ninth president of Berea College, has been the president since 2012.

“It has been an honor and so very satisfying to have served Berea College as its ninth president,” Roelofs said in a news release. “Everything about this school, from its transformative mission to the wonderful students, staff, faculty, alumni and friends, have made this such a privilege for (my wife) Laurie and me.”

Board of Trustees chair Stephanie Zeigler thanked Roelofs for his time at Berea, and said the early announcement gives the board “ample time and a competitive edge” in its search for the next president.

“The Board of Trustees and I are truly grateful for Lyle and First Lady Laurie Roelofs’ tremendous service to Berea College, and we are thankful for their longevity of service,” Zeigler said. “Their timing was remarkably fortuitous, and given their steady and thoughtful leadership throughout the unimaginable challenges brought on by COVID-19, Berea College is in a place of strength.”

Academic Search, the same search firm that brought Roelofs to Berea, has been hired to conduct the search for the next president. A search committee made up of trustees, faculty members, staff and students has also been formed, the release said.

The search firm and committee will begin gathering input from faculty, staff, students, alumni and community members about the next president throughout the winter and spring of 2022, the release said. The new president will begin on July 1, 2023.

Berea College has over 1,600 undergraduate students, according to the school’s website. No student at Berea pays tuition through the Tuition Promise Scholarship program.

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