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Oklahoma City University President Tom McDaniel will retire from his position as of June 30, 2010, and a search for his successor has begun, the university said Wednesday.
McDaniel will remain a part of the OCU family and has accepted the position of chancellor, which will keep him involved in fundraising, special projects and serving as a liaison between the University and Oklahoma City's business community.
"Tom McDaniel and his lovely wife Brenda have transformed Oklahoma City University," said Bill Shdeed, chairman of OCU's board of trustees. "They have set the bar incredibly high with their genuine love for the students, staff, faculty and alumni of OCU, and also with their fiscal responsibility, accountability and servant leadership."
"Brenda and I will always be committed to OCU. This university and its people are like family," McDaniel said. "Chairman Bill Shdeed and the board of trustees have been incredibly supportive and we are appreciative of the opportunity to be a part of the university's bright future."
McDaniel took the helm at OCU in June 2001. Fundraising, capital projects and endowment efforts total more than $150 million and include the Wanda L. Bass School of Music, the Centennial Residence Hall; the Meinders School of Business, The Devon Boathouse, Home of OCU Rowing, the renovation of the Tom and Brenda McDaniel University Center, construction of the Edith Kinney Gaylord Center at the Ann Lacy School of American Dance and Arts Management, the construction of Lacy Stadium, home of OCU softball, the renovation of the OCU wrestling headquarters, the Steve and Suzan Knight Weight Room, Jim Wade Stadium, home of OCU baseball, campus beautification projects, the renovation and expansion of the Norick Art Center and the renovation and expansion of the Lacy Visitors Center.
OCU's endowment, which supports student scholarships, faculty chairs, professorships, lectureships and special programs has doubled during McDaniel's presidency, and OCU completed its $100 million campaign, the largest to date, some 14 months ahead of schedule.
New academic initiatives brought to bear by McDaniel's administration include the Saint Paul School of Theology at Oklahoma City University, Oklahoma's only United Methodist seminary program. OCU's first two doctoral programs have launched this fall in its Kramer School of Nursing, the Doctor of Nursing Practice and the Ph.D. in nursing. OCU will break ground on a new, $9 million nursing facility in October. Plans are underway for a new facility for the Oklahoma City University School of Law and also to construct a new science center on campus. A new degree track, the Oxford Plan, launched this fall allows students to complete undergraduate and law degrees in a six-year period.
A search committee has been formed, and is comprised of OCU trustees, faculty, staff, students and alumni. Chairing the committee is former Oklahoma City mayor and OCU alumnus Ron Norick. Law Professor Paula Dalley serves as vice chair. The 15-member committee plans to recommend a successor to the board of trustees during the spring semester.
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