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Janet McNew

Janet McNew To Step Down as Provost at Illinois Wesleyan in 2006

April 22, 2005

BLOOMINGTON, Ill. - Janet McNew, provost and dean of the faculty at Illinois Wesleyan University, has announced that she will leave that position, effective July 31, 2006, following a one-year sabbatical leave.

McNew, who served as acting president of Illinois Wesleyan in 2003-04, joined the University in 1993. In addition to her administrative duties, she is a professor of English.

“Janet McNew's service to Illinois Wesleyan has been extraordinary,” said Illinois Wesleyan President Richard F. Wilson. “Time and again, she has stepped into the breach and has provided strong leadership in many different areas. I am personally very grateful for her work during my transition.”

Wilson announced that Roger Schnaitter, associate provost, will become acting provost during the 2005-06 academic year and that Thomas Griffiths, associate dean of the faculty, will serve as acting dean. Wilson said that the University will conduct a national search for McNew's replacement beginning in September in order to have a successor named by the spring of 2006.

In an announcement distributed to the campus, McNew noted that she had “devoted the past two years to building a sturdy bridge” between the era of late President Minor Myers jr., who died of lung cancer in July 2003, and the Wilson presidency, which began in July 2004. “I am ready,” she added, “ to turn my energies toward making my own transitions.”

As acting president, McNew led efforts to create a new mission statement for the University as well as the Board of Trustees' adoption of a resolution to make diversifying the campus a priority for the University's strategic planning. During her tenure as provost and dean of the faculty, she spearheaded numerous initiatives, including the process that brought a chapter of Phi Beta Kappa to the University, an overhaul of the general education curriculum along with a new academic calendar, and the establishment of the Mellon Center for Faculty and Curriculum Development. As provost, McNew oversaw the hiring of more than half of the University's current faculty members.

McNew received her bachelor's degree from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and her M.A. and Ph.D. degrees in English Language and Literature from the University of Virginia. She taught in and chaired the Department of English at St. John's University/College of Saint Benedict in Minnesota before coming to Illinois Wesleyan.