Western Washington University President Bruce Shepard announced today, June 11, his intention to retire after the upcoming 2015-2016 academic year.
“Serving Western has been a richly rewarding privilege and so this has not been an easy decision. Yet, transitions always come and, after much reflection, I believe it is time for Western and for Cyndie [Shepard] and me,” Shepard said in a press release. “We are deeply grateful for having the opportunity to serve Western, look forward to an exciting final year, and know that, over the years that then follow, we will always proudly be Vikings.”
The university’s Board of Trustees intend to search next year for a new president.
“Shepard, who next fall will begin his eighth year as president at Western, has provided strong and steady leadership for a university increasingly recognized in the state, region and across the nation for its academic excellence,” said Paul Cocke, Western’s Office of University Communications and Marketing director, in a press release.
Shepard became Western’s 13th president in 2008. Before coming to Western, he served as chancellor of the University of Wisconsin-Green Bay for seven years. He also taught political science at Eastern Oregon University, and holds various degrees in political science from the University of California, Riverside.
Shepard’s full message to campus detailing his retirement can be found here.
Update: The Western Front sat down with Shepard for a Q&A discussing his announced retirement and his plans for the future.