WIUM Local
2:30 pm
Tue April 6, 2010

Knox President To Retire

Galesburg, IL – Dr. Roger Taylor was a retired lawyer when Knox College asked him to become the school's next president.

Taylor accepted, and came out of retirement. Ten years later, he plans to retire again. He'll step down in June 2011, concurrent with the college's 175th anniversary.

He says it's a good time to step down as the school enters what he calls a "new round of strategic planning." It also just went through re-accredidation.

But above all, Taylor says it's time for he and his wife to kick back and relax.

"We have a farm in Fulton County near Ellisville," he says. "We will spend time there on the farm, and we also have a small apartment in Chicago. So we'll split our time."

Taylor says Knox has seen some improvements since he's taken office. For example, student enrollment is up from approximately 1,050 when he started, to roughly 1,400 this school year. Plus, more alumni have become involved with the campus and more are beginning to lend financial assistance.

He doesn't take credit for such things, but he does take credit for an increase in what he calls "institutional self confidence," in other words -- school pride.

"I pester students every chance I get," he says. "I say, when you get out of college, and somebody asks you where you went to college, are you going to look down at your shoes and say 'oh, a small school. You've probably never heard of it,' or are you going to say 'Knox College?' I've repeated that so many times, when they see me coming, they start running."

Taylor will leave office by June of next year. A replacement has not been named, but a search committee to find one is being formed.