Sep. 25, 2013

College celebrates campaign success and president's legacy

Christopher Dahl

Geneseo President Christopher C. Dahl has led the college for 18 years. On Friday, Sept. 27, the college community will gather to celebrate the completion of Shaping Lives of Purpose: The Campaign for Geneseo and Dahl's legacy. /PHOTO BY KEITH WALTERS '11

On Friday, Sept. 27, the college community and alumni from across the country will gather to celebrate the completion of Shaping Lives of Purpose: The Campaign for Geneseo and President Christopher C. Dahl for his many years of leadership.

The public program begins in Wadsworth Auditorium at 7 p.m. Faculty, staff, alumni and others are invited to attend. Following the program, guests are invited to gather on the College Green for dessert and coffee, and then at the gazebo to enjoy fireworks over the valley as part of Homecoming festivities. A special guest is returning to campus to emcee the program.

The evening events mark the completion of the campaign, launched in fall 2011. Alumni, faculty, staff, parents and friends of the college are giving more than $22 million to strengthen endowments and programs for Geneseo’s future. It signifies a new era at Geneseo, says Dahl. “We’re building a culture of philanthropy, to inspire people to give back in various ways, from personal service and volunteering to giving resources,” he says.

Shaping Lives of Purpose logoIt’s a great way to start a new legacy at Geneseo, as Provost Carol S. Long takes over as interim president Oct. 1. After 18 years as president, Dahl will begin leave Oct. 1, during which time he will work on special projects, including initiatives for SUNY, development work for the college and professional research. He retires in June 2014.

“Even in the flurry of multiple farewell events I can't quite believe that I'm stepping down as president and beginning my leave in a few days. Geneseo has been my life for more than 19 years now, and most of my friends and colleagues are here, to say nothing of the ever new, ever talented, and ever delightful students who have enriched my life on campus,” he says. “Together, as a college community, we have made a special place even more special. We have never lost sight of our liberal arts mission: that fact itself has made us distinctive and distinguished. I'm looking forward to celebrating the successful conclusion of the Shaping Lives of Purpose campaign. What a good note to go out on! I'm pleased that my sabbatical will keep me involved with the true work of the college: teaching and learning and sharing that learning. That's reassuring to me — and a source of real joy.”

Alumni leaders who are members of the Foundation Board, Geneseo Alumni Association and the Alumni Council also will be meeting over the weekend to develop strategies to engage alumni in support of students and faculty. They will focus on class leadership, communication, regional committees throughout the country, and career opportunities for students and alumni networking.

• The farewell and campaign celebration Friday, Sept. 27, at 7 p.m. is open to the public. Guests are asked to arrive at Wadsworth Auditorium by 6:45 p.m. to be seated.