The inauguration of President Jonathan D. Green

An Historic Occasion for a Contemporary Vision: The Inauguration of President Jonathan D. Green

By Victoria Kidd
Fall 2017 Issue

History and tradition, forward thought and future promise were interwoven during the Oct. 20 ceremony officially installing Jonathan D. Green as Susquehanna University’s 15th president. Delegates from more than 90 colleges, universities, and learned and professional societies joined Susquehanna students, current and emeriti faculty and board members in a formal procession to begin the ceremony. Of the delegates, six were presidents of their institutions, representing Augsburg University, College of St. Benedict, Elizabethtown College, Gustavus Adolphus College, Juniata College and Walsh College. In addition, the president emerita of Kenyon College participated.

Presidents Emeriti L. Jay Lemons and Joel Cunningham joined President Green for his inauguration.

Also in attendance were former Susquehanna presidents and first ladies L. Jay and Marsha Lemons (2001-2017) and Joel L. and Trudy Cunningham (1984-2000).

In her welcome, Trustee Chair Signe Gates ’71, who served as chair of the Presidential Search Committee, pointed to the rarity of a presidential inauguration at Susquehanna and assured the audience of more than 1,000 people that Green is indeed worthy of carrying on the legacy of “this special place.” She praised him as a “collective problem solver” who believes that liberal arts education, one in which we gain “a perspective broader than ourselves and a vision beyond the here and now,” is needed today more than ever.

A series of greetings were offered on behalf of students, faculty, staff, alumni, the church and the Selinsgrove community, ending with Lynn Pasquerella, president of the Association of American Colleges and Universities. She described Green’s reputation among his peers as that of “… a gifted administrator, but first and foremost, he is a teacher and mentor.” She added, “I cannot wait to see the heights to which the River Hawks will rise under his continued leadership.”

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