Wiley College President Haywood L. Strickland announced on Monday his plans to retire in June 2018.

“I’m getting old,” he said Monday, chuckling. “It’s just time. I’ve served longer than most presidents now. Most now (serve about) seven years or so and this is my 18th year. “That’s really a long time to be in this high octane, high pressure job. I’ve enjoyed it, I’ve accomplished what I wanted to now it’s time to enjoy retirement, enjoy my granddaughter. It’s really more personal than anything else.”

Strickland made the announcement and submitted his formal letter of intent to retire to the college’s board of trustees at the end of his board presentation Thursday during the summer board meeting, a release on Monday said.

“We wanted to make it seamless and ensure there was no downtime between presidents,” Strickland said. “Far too often presidents leave under some kind of pressure and there’s a disconnect between the (administrations). I want to make sure I have a conversation with the new president and answer any questions. I wanted to give them an opportunity to prepare for my leaving rather than a short (notice) departure.”

Strickland said the trustees formed a search committee in the spring, which is being advised by the Association of Governing Boards of Universities and Colleges, in its work to recruit and name a successor.

“Not many people know that at one time in his life, President Strickland thought his life’s work would be in the ministry,” said Walter L. Sutton Jr., the chair of Wiley’s board of trustees, in response to Strickland’s letter. “It was fortunate for Wiley College and the higher education community that he ultimately fulfilled his calling through years of consistent and dedicated service to ensure access to a higher education.”

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