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Allegheny College selects president |

Allegheny College selects president

Bill Zlatos
| Thursday, February 21, 2008 12:00 a.m

James H. Mullen, Jr., president of Elms College in Chicopee, Mass., was chosen Wednesday as the 21st president of Allegheny College. He will start Aug. 1.

Mullen, 49, will replace Richard J. Cook, who is retiring after 12 years as president of Allegheny, a liberal arts college of 2,100 students in Meadville, Crawford County.

Mullen previously served as chancellor of the University of North Carolina at Asheville and senior vice president of Trinity College in Hartford, Conn.

Tom Slonaker, chairman of the college’s search committee, said the college was looking for a leader with excellent communication and fundraising skills. The school also wanted someone who is committed to diversity and experienced in strategic planning.

“Jim came out as a strong candidate in all four of those,” said Slonaker, 72, of Hilton Head Island, S.C.

He said the board expects Mullen to build on the work of Cook, and move the college into greater national prominence.

“I always thought the college was a well-kept secret, and we’d like to share that secret with other people,” Slonaker said.

Another target is to build the endowment, now at $160 million.

“If we could double or triple it, it would just be terrific,” Slonaker said.

Mullen is a graduate of the College of the Holy Cross in Worcester, Mass. He holds a master’s degree in public policy from Harvard University and a doctorate in education from the University of Massachusetts in Amherst.

He and his wife, Mari Elizabeth, have two children, Franki and James.

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