Thomas V. Chema, President of Hiram College, has agreed to extend his tenure for an additional year beyond the end of his current contract in July 2013.
Kenneth C. Moore, Chairman of the board of trustees announced the extension with the following note to faculty and staff:
“On behalf of the Hiram College Board of Trustees, I am pleased to inform you that once again the Board has asked Tom Chema to extend his contract as President of Hiram College and once again he has agreed. While more than a year remains on President Chema’s current long-term contract, the Board deemed it prudent to act well in advance to extend Tom’s period of active service to the College by at least an additional year. Our action reflects our appreciation of Tom’s extraordinary work on behalf of the College.
Tom’s vision for Hiram continues to impress the Board and the larger Hiram community. Under his leadership Hiram has seen dramatic growth in enrollment, fundraising, academic initiatives, reputation, and visibility. Inspiring many in the greater Hiram community, he has also been a relentless and successful ambassador for the institution off-campus with government leaders, higher-education associations, foundations, and public opinion leaders. When the Board focuses on campus, we have been pleased with how Tom has worked closely with Dean Bob Haak and our experienced senior staff to address important issues significantly affecting the work done by our respected faculty and staff members.
This is an exciting and important time in the life of Hiram College. We have ambitious plans for extended learning programs, which will reach students who would otherwise not receive a Hiram education and who simultaneously will enhance the revenue that supports all aspects of the College. In a similar vein, we are working on the successful completion of the Endowment Initiative, which will also strengthen the foundation for all that you do for the students and the College. The Board felt strongly that Tom’s leadership was essential to the success of these efforts.
Hiram’s accomplishments would not have been possible without your hard work and dedication to the goals we have established as a community through the Strategic Planning process. Hiram’s future is even brighter because of the service you and President Chema have devoted to the College. Today I am honored to announce an agreement between the Board and Tom Chema to extend his leadership as President in order to extend the success he and you bring to Hiram.”
Chema became Hiram’s 21st President in 2003 after 11 years on the Board of Trustees, during which time undergraduate enrollment has increased by more than 50 percent with significant gains in out-of-state and minority student populations. Growth in enrollment has been accompanied by creation of new academic programs developed during his tenure, including a first-ever post graduate degree program, and distinctive majors in nursing and accounting as well as seven Centers of Excellence built on Hiram’s historic strength in the liberal arts.
“I am extremely pleased and flattered that the Board of Trustees has expressed its confidence in me by asking me to stay on,” Chema said. “I look forward to working with the Board, the faculty, staff and students to continue the progress we have made, and to secure Hiram’s future as a leader and innovator in higher education.”