Upchurch speaks to town hall audience about Abare retirement

Monday evening, Historic City News reported the announcement made to the Flagler College community during a town hall meeting that its president, Dr. William T. Abare, Jr., will retire in June of 2017.

Speaking for the Flagler College Board of Trustees, its chairman, Frank D. Upchurch III, explained to those in the audience what steps the Board will take over the next 14 months in preparation for the transition.

“Dr. Abare has been a great leader and done an extraordinary job as the president of Flagler College for the past 15 years, and for 30 years before that,” Upchurch recalled. “We are deeply grateful for all that Bill and his wife, Susan, have done for the College, and we look forward to celebrating the final year of his presidency with them in suitable fashion.”

Upchurch outlined highlights from the Board’s succession plan that includes a nationwide search for the next president. A presidential search consultant is in place, according to Upchurch. They are prepared to launch their search right away.

In the interim, Abare will continue leading the college.

Upchurch said he was pleased that Dr. Abare has agreed that, following his retirement and a well-earned sabbatical, he will stay on at the college in a special advisory capacity as President Emeritus.

“I have had many highlights in my professional career in education, but serving as president of this great institution has been the crowning achievement of my career, and, without question, the most rewarding,” Abare said before introducing Upchurch to the audience.

During his time at Flagler, Upchurch said Dr. Abare was appointed president of Flagler College in 2001, culminating a 30-year career in which he served as Dean of Admissions, Vice President of Academic Affairs, Executive Vice President, and Executive Vice President and Dean of Academic Affairs.

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