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Leadership team moving 91ߣƵ University forward

As BW begins a nationwide search for its next president, a distinguished group of four leaders is at the helm and ready to drive growth.

Greg Flanik, Ellen Zegarra, Greg Cingle and Dr. Thomas Sutton

Members of the BW Office of the President are (clockwise from bottom left) Greg Flanik '97, MBA '10, VP for operations; Greg Cingle '90, chief financial officer; Dr. Thomas Sutton, acting president and interim provost; and Ellen Zegarra, VP of philanthropy & alumni engagement.

Following the June 30 retirement of former BW President Bob Helmer, a new leadership structure is in place at 91ߣƵ University with an eye on the future.

The innovative management model brings together four executives to operate collectively as the Office of the President (OP). This cross-functional team is comprised of Dr. Thomas Sutton, acting president and interim provost; Greg Flanik '97, MBA '10, vice president for operations; Ellen Zegarra, vice president of philanthropy & alumni engagement; and Greg Cingle '90, chief financial officer.

The four will collaborate closely with a Board Advisory Council, other members of the BW President's Cabinet and the entire campus community to advance institutional goals, which include improving on an already extraordinary student experience and solidifying long-term financial sustainability. 

Building an even better BW

"This group management model has worked well at other strong universities during a presidential transition, including at Ohio State," says Trustee Chair Lee Thomas '76. "We were not looking to name a caretaker that would maintain the status quo during our presidential search. Instead, the BW OP leadership team will continue to innovate and build on the vibrant student experience at BW."

In fact, with the start of the 2024-25 academic year less than two months away, BW is currently deploying new programs, processes and infrastructure, including:

At the same time, the ongoing efforts of a transformation working group have put the University on track to achieve a balanced budget by 2024-2025 and to remain a leader in the evolving landscape of higher education.

Strong enrollment, retention 

Student spell out BW in front of Strosacker Hall

In spite of a year that saw FAFSA delays and ongoing demographic factors impacting higher education, the incoming first-year Class of 2028 is healthy and still growing by the day.

Applications were up significantly this year, and BW is within striking distance of the 2024-25 first-year enrollment goal, which was set prior to the FAFSA disruptions. Retention, which equals student success, is also looking strong.

Members of the OP stress that they are committed to providing leadership that results in change that improves the BW experience, encourages employees to innovate and strengthens the University's core mission.

Sutton noted, "We are approaching BW's 180th anniversary, and we are looking forward to celebrating that milestone by focusing on doing what we do best: transformational teaching and support for each student leading to a life well-lived."

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