Henderson announces big potential change

NSU President Jim Henderson released the following statement to faculty and staff concerning a potentially huge change in leadership at the university depending on the decision made at a board meeting in Baton Rouge Tuesday.

JimHendersonTwitterDear NSU Faculty and Staff:

This morning it was announced that I have been recommended by a search committee of the Board of Supervisors of the University of Louisiana System to become president of that system which governs Northwestern and eight other schools in the state. That recommendation will be considered by the full board at a meeting Thursday in Baton Rouge. I have agreed to accept the presidency if the board approves my nomination.

This is to let you know that one of my highest priorities, if elected, would be to assist in every way possible in making this a positive and beneficial transition for Northwestern that would help assure the continued progress and momentum of the university that we all cherish.

It is impossible for me to adequately express to each of you my appreciation for the role that you have played in creating this possibility for me to assume a position of expanded involvement in shaping the future of Northwestern and other schools in the University of Louisiana System. This university has extremely capable and gifted faculty and staff members. Your commitment over the past 21 months to raising Northwestern to higher levels of achievement and excellence helped create the recognition and attention that resulted in my nomination to this position. We are attracting and retaining students that are enhancing the reputation and image of the university. The loyalty and enthusiasm of our students and their support of the university was another factor in the board’s interest in perhaps having me involved in the leadership of the system.

Northwestern, as I have stated many times, is blessed with some of the most knowledgeable and creative people in higher education in Louisiana and far beyond. The vast pool of talent and energy here will ensure the continued success of our school and my alma mater regardless of who is serving as president. Our students now and in the future will continue to benefit from your talents and commitment to excellence. My continual and extensive interaction with students, faculty, staff, alumni, and others has made serving as Northwestern’s president an enjoyable and rewarding experience. Those relationships will continue whether I am here or in another position.

If the board selects me to serve as system president, that would provide additional energy in our mutual efforts to improve and enrich Northwestern, just as we should work to make every university in Louisiana as strong and effective as possible. In this time of immense challenge and limitless opportunity for higher education, effective leadership for the universities of Louisiana at the system level is paramount.

Thank you for your ongoing support and assistance and for making our association with Northwestern, whether it continues as it is or in a different capacity, so gratifying and enjoyable for me, Tonia, and our family.

Sincerely and Fork ‘em Demons!

Jim

12 thoughts on “Henderson announces big potential change

  1. …we are keeping the good ones. This is an opportunity for Dr. Henderson to make an even bigger impact on higher education in Louisiana…thus Northwestern continues to benefit. Dr. Henderson has earned this opportunity through his great deeds and outstanding leadership.

  2. Response to the followng comment about Dr. Henderson’s leaving NSU: Huge Loss for Northestern….

    As in life, we often are so preoccupied with what we want, we forget to be thankful for what we have had. Dr. Henderson’s time at NSU, consequently his leaving, however premature we might judge that departure to be, can never be a “huge loss.” It will always be a gift which we had and which will always be a benefit. In addition, he is not leaving to go back where he came from or to another rear; he is leaving to go to a place where his skills will benefit all of Louisiana and NSU. Emotionally, this is a “huge loss” as you say; actually, it is a great promotion for him which will be a great benefit to NSU.

  3. Change is always anxiety producing. However, I think Drr. Henderson has laid a foundation which his successor will build upon with the collaboration of Dr. Henderson from the System”s office. His energy, vision, passion and drive will benefit the entire state. Best wishes, Dr. Henderson. Visit us often and remember you will always be one of us. James L. Holly, MD, Long Purple Line, Hall of Distinction, 2015.

  4. HUGE LOSS for Northwestern State and the student body as well as the women’s basketball team!!!!

    • As in life, we often are so preoccupied with what we want, we forget to be thankful for what we have had. Dr. Henderson’s time at NSU, consequently his leaving, however premature we might judge that departure to be, can never be a “huge loss.” It will always be a gift which we had and which will always be a benefit. In addition, he is not leaving to go back where he came from or to another rear; he is leaving to go to a place where his skills will benefit all of Louisiana and NSU. Emotionally, this is a “huge loss” as you say; actually, it is a great promotion for him which will be a great benefit to NSU.

  5. It is sad when politics interfere with the education of our young people. Dr. Henderson has shown his commitment to our University in many ways. Sports is secondary I understand, but last year after graduation he and his wife drove through the night to personally present the Diplomas to the Baseball players who had graduated, but were playing in Abilene, Texas, which is a very long drive from here. He did not have to do that and is a good example of the character that he brings to our University. To lose him in political BS would be a travesty, and I hope he understands that.

  6. Great news for the Louisiana state system, and a wise choice on their part, but we definitely will miss the energy, enthusiasm and breath of fresh air the Hendersons have brought to Natchitoches and NSU. All the best, no matter what.

    • Amen, John! I can heartily agree with that. Jim Henderson will be a big loss in the day to day operation at NSU, but on the long haul I believe he can be much more effective at the system level. The level where we have always been sadly under-represented.

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