Richard F. Wilson
Richard F. Wilson has served as the President of Illinois Wesleyan University since 2004. Prior to his appointment as president, he held several leadership positions over a twenty-six year period at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, most recently as Associate Chancellor for Development and Vice President of the University of Illinois Foundation.
Over the last eight years, Dr. Wilson has given special attention to implementing a strategic plan for Illinois Wesleyan, strengthening the University’s financial position, and conducting the largest fund-raising campaign in the school’s history. These efforts have resulted in increased attention to assessment of student learning in academic programs, expansion of efforts related to community engagement and globalization, growth in domestic and international student diversity, and increased commitment to sustainability, including construction of the first LEED certified building on the Wesleyan campus. He has made the Transforming Lives fund-raising campaign a priority and thus far has helped secure more than $104 million toward the campaign’s $125 million goal that encompasses endowed scholarships and professorships, academic and extracurricular program support, and new facilities.
President Wilson earned master’s and doctoral degrees in higher education from the University of Michigan. He holds a bachelor's degree in education from Alderson-Broaddus College, where he began his career in higher education as Director of Admissions. He is a member of both Phi Beta Kappa and Phi Kappa Phi national honor societies.
Dr. Wilson is chair of the Federation of Independent Illinois Colleges and Universities for 2012-2013. He also is on the board of EIIA, an organization providing insurance and risk management services for colleges and universities, and serves on the National Association of Independent Colleges and Universities’ Committee on Accountability. He is a board member for the McLean County Historical Society and Economic Development Council of the Bloomington-Normal Area.
President Wilson and his wife, Dr. Patricia Wilson, have two married children, Adam and Rachel.