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By Tyler Williams
John Williams, the previous chair of the Political Science department, officially took over as Principia College Interim President today, Dec. 16. This decision was first announced to the campus by the administration on Tuesday, Nov. 19. Williams was originally planning to take his sabbatical during the spring semester.
Williams is looking forward to serving the Principia community as interim president, he said. Since graduating from the college in 1976, he has worked at Principia for 36 years under six different presidents. During his time as interim president, he wants to help set the next president up for success.
Williams’ many years at the college have prepared him to understand the way the institution functions as well as the people who study and work here. Williams has served in several leadership roles at the college, including chairing the Political Science department and 10 cumulative years as the Faculty Senate president.
As interim president, Williams will serve only until a permanent president is selected. Therefore, Williams will help move forward Principia’s goals and strive to make positive change. Williams said that he is most excited to see where God is leading him and what God’s plan is for him in this position.
“The work we have is so serious that we cannot afford to be serious about it,” said Williams. He believes that everyone involved in this process must go about their duties with absolute joy and grace. This approach is integral to Principia’s success, he said.
To find a permanent president, the administration will hire an outside firm to identify candidates. Then, a search committee made up of representatives from all stakeholder groups will be created and help narrow the field of presidential candidates. Once a candidate is finalized, Williams will serve as a “host” and show the new president the ropes of leading Principia College.