Presidential search committee says Delaney is the top choice

When the full board of trustees of Flagler College meets next Thursday, October 21, 2021, Historic City News has learned that the presidential search committee will announce that they have concluded the national search for a permanent leader to replace former president, Joseph Gardner Joyner.

In a resolution adopted earlier this month, the committee reached the decision to recommend interim president, 65-year-old John Adrian Delaney, to be named the fifth president of Flagler College.

“The committee has had an opportunity to meet with Delaney both in individual meetings and in scheduled board meetings,” college spokeswoman Beth Sweeny was quoted in media reports.  “Through those discussions, it has become clear that he has the experience and vision that is needed to move the college forward at this pivotal point in time.”

Delaney is concluding a one-year contract as interim president.  He brings extensive experience in both higher education and public policy to the position.  He served for 15 years as president of the University of North Florida in Jacksonville, from 2003 to 2018. Before that, he served two consecutive terms as mayor of Jacksonville, from 1995 to 2003.

If the full board of trustees approves the Delaney installation, the length of his contract and proposed salary will be finalized.


Delaney was born in Lansing, Michigan, and raised in Cincinnati, Ohio. His family moved to Jacksonville when he was sixteen. He graduated from Terry Parker High School in 1974 and attended the University of Florida, where he joined the Delta Upsilon fraternity. He received a B.A. and a law degree. Delaney and his wife Gena married in 1980 and they reside in Neptune Beach. They have four children.