Dr. David Manuel

Dr. David Manuel installed as Drury University’s 17th President

SPRINGFIELD, Mo., September 20, 2013 — Dr. David Manuel was officially installed as Drury University’s 17th President on Friday, Sept. 20 in Stone Chapel on Drury’s campus.

Paying tribute to Drury’s 140-year history, Dr. Manuel borrowed from the university’s first president, Nathan Morrison, as he mapped out his plan for Drury’s future to a packed house of faculty, staff, students and community members. “Drury’s mission and vision are the outline of our horizon,” Manuel said. “Join me as we take to heart the words of our first president, ‘Look up, not down. Look forward, not backward and look out, not in.”

Board Chairman Lynn Chipperfield places the Presidential Medallion on Dr. David Manuel

The Chairman of the Board of Trustees Lynn Chipperfield and Drury’s 16th President Todd Parnell officially installed Manuel with the Presidential Medallion. “It takes a rare combination of gifts to serve as president,” Chipperfield said. “A combination of strength and compassion, a sense of duty and a sense of humor. Dave Manuel has exhibited every one of these and then some. Drury University is in good hands.”

Manuel was preceded on the podium by a host of speakers: student Max Byers, staff member Annette Avery, Dean of the College Dr. Charles Taylor, and Springfield Mayor Bob Stephens. University Chaplain Dr. Peter Browning offered the invocation and the benediction, and Dr. Regina Waters, chair of the Department of Communication, was the master of ceremonies.

Dr. Manuel was introduced as Drury’s 17th president on Oct. 31, 2012. He succeeds Todd Parnell who retired as Drury’s president on May 31, 2013. Before coming to Drury, Dr. Manuel was chancellor at Louisiana State University-Alexandria. Before that, he was the vice president of academic affairs at St. Mary’s University in San Antonio, Texas. A native of Louisiana, Dr. Manuel has a bachelor’s degree from Nicholls State and master’s and doctorate degrees in economics from the University of Mississippi.

Dr. Manuel and his wife Betty Coe live in the historic President’s House with their cocker spaniel Bailey. The Manuels have two adults sons and one granddaughter.

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Dr. David Manuel installed as Drury University’s 17th President

SPRINGFIELD, Mo., September 20, 2013 — Dr. David Manuel was officially installed as Drury University’s 17thPresident on Friday, Sept. 20 in Stone Chapel on Drury’s campus.

Paying tribute to Drury’s 140-year history, Dr. Manuel borrowed from the university’s first president, Nathan Morrison, as he mapped out his plan for Drury’s future to a packed house of faculty, staff, students and community members. “Drury’s mission and vision are the outline of our horizon,” Manuel said. “Join me as we take to heart the words of our first president, ‘Look up, not down. Look forward, not backward and look out, not in.”

Board Chairman Lynn Chipperfield formally installs Dr. David Manuel as Drury’s 17th President with the Presidential Medallion

The Chairman of the Board of Trustees Lynn Chipperfield and Drury’s 16th President Todd Parnell officially installed Manuel with the Presidential Medallion. “It takes a rare combination of gifts to serve as president,” Chipperfield said. “A combination of strength and compassion, a sense of duty and a sense of humor. Dave Manuel has exhibited every one of these and then some. Drury University is in good hands.”

Manuel was preceded on the podium by a host of speakers: student Max Byers, staff member Annette Avery, Dean of the College Dr. Charles Taylor, and Springfield Mayor Bob Stephens. University Chaplain Dr. Peter Browning offered the invocation and the benediction, and Dr. Regina Waters, chair of the Department of Communication, was the master of ceremonies.

Dr. Manuel was introduced as Drury’s 17th president on Oct. 31, 2012. He succeeds Todd Parnell who retired as Drury’s president on May 31, 2013. Before coming to Drury, Dr. Manuel was chancellor at Louisiana State University-Alexandria. Before that, he was the vice president of academic affairs at St. Mary’s University in San Antonio, Texas. A native of Louisiana, Dr. Manuel has a bachelor’s degree from Nicholls State and master’s and doctorate degrees in economics from the University of Mississippi.

Dr. Manuel and his wife Betty Coe live in the historic President’s House with their cocker spaniel Bailey. The Manuels have two adults sons and one granddaughter.

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A week of activities culminates with the installation of Drury’s 17th President

SPRINGFIELD, Mo., Sept. 3, 2013 — Dr. David Manuel will be installed as Drury’s 17th President on Friday, Sept. 20 at 3 p.m. in Stone Chapel. Dr. Manuel assumed the Drury presidency on June 1, 2013, following the retirement of Todd Parnell. Manuel comes to Drury from Louisiana State University-Alexandria where he served as chancellor.

“I’ve worked closely with Dr. Manuel for several months now, and I’m even more confident that the board of trustees made the right choice,” said Lynn Chipperfield, chairman of Drury’s board of trustees. “His extensive background in higher education, his engagement with all of Drury’s stakeholders, and the way he’s gotten the school year off to a great start all assure me that Drury is in good hands.”

Drury's 17th President Dr. David Manuel

Dr. Manuel’s installation will culminate a week of events to commemorate Drury’s new leadership. Dr. Manuel has chosen “Learn-Engage-Serve” as the theme for his installation.

Tuesday, Sept. 17

▪       Student and alumni reception with the President. 5:30 p.m. Pool Art Center.

▪       Musical performance with Mezzo Soprano Tynan Davis. 7:30 p.m. Clara Thompson Hall.
Davis, a professional opera singer based in New York, will be joined onstage by the Springfield-Drury Civic Orchestra, the Drury Singers, the Drury Concert Choir, and the Drury Jazz Combo I.

Wednesday, Sept. 18

  • Day of Service. Drury students, faculty and staff will volunteer in the community. Drury’s course delivery sites around southwest Missouri will also engage in volunteer activities. (Classes will remain in session).

Thursday, Sept. 19

▪       Founder’s Day Convocation. Matt O’Reilly presents, “Zen and the art of getting off the couch.” 11 a.m. Stone Chapel. O’Reilly owns local sporting goods store Dynamic Earth, development company Green Circle Projects, and he founded the Farmers Market of the Ozarks.

Friday, Sept. 20

▪       The installation of Drury’s 17th President Dr. David Manuel. 3 p.m. Stone Chapel. A reception for students, faculty and staff will follow the installation ceremony on the Stone Chapel lawn.

Media note: Dr. Manuel will have a media availability from 2:15-2:30 p.m. prior to the installation ceremony. The media availability will be on the first floor of Stone Chapel. Media are welcome to attend Dr. Manuel’s installation and photograph or videotape the event.

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Drury Trustee Rick Lester dies at age 61

From: Dr. David Manuel

It saddens me to report to you that Drury Trustee William F. (Rick) Lester died Saturday afternoon, July 20, 2013. Rick died after suffering a medical crisis while riding in the Courage Classic bicycle tour through Colorado. The specific cause of death has not been determined.

Drury Trustee Rick Lester

Rick was a 1974 graduate of Drury University and was elected to serve on the Board of Trustees in 2001.  As a member of the Board, Rick chaired the Development Committee and served on special committees at the request of various Chairmen.  He was an unabashedly vibrant supporter of Drury University and kept student success at the forefront of his efforts.  Most recently, Rick served on the Performing Arts Advisory Council as part of the Drury Connect Initiative.

Rick Lester was the CEO of TRG (Target Resource Group), a company he founded in 1995 following a career in arts management. He served as president and executive director of the San Antonio Symphony, the Charlotte Symphony Orchestra and the Knoxville Symphony. Before that, he was a marketing and public relations professional for the Cincinnati Symphony and the Cleveland Orchestra. At each of his career stops he helped bring in record revenue and contributions. Throughout his career he consulted for orchestras and other non-profit organizations.

Rick earned a bachelor of arts in political science from Drury in 1974, and a master of business administration from Queens College in Charlotte, N.C.   Over the past few months, Rick served as a visiting professor at Southern Methodist University.  He resided in Woodland Park, Colorado.

Please keep Sandy Lester and all of Rick’s family in your thoughts and prayers.  As more information on funeral arrangements becomes available, I will communicate those to you.

Drury University’s president-elect is Dr. David Manuel

SPRINGFIELD, Mo., Oct. 31, 2012 — Drury University announced today, Wednesday, Oct. 31, that Dr. David Manuel will become Drury’s president on June 1, 2013.

“I am honored and humbled to be named the 17th president of Drury University. Drury holds a very special place in American higher education by answering the call for broadly educated young people who are prepared to shape the future,” Dr. Manuel said. “I look forward to joining Drury and to becoming a strong link in Drury’s connections to its constituents, to its communities and to its future.”

Dr. David Manuel

Dr. Manuel is currently the chancellor and a professor of Economics at Louisiana State University at Alexandria. Prior to working at LSU-Alexandria, Manuel was the vice president of academic affairs at St. Mary’s University in San Antonio, Texas. Manuel holds a Ph.D. and a master’s in economics from the University of Mississippi. He has a bachelor’s degree in economics from Nicholls State University.

“We are excited to welcome Dr. Manuel and his wife Betty Coe Manuel to the Drury community,” said Lynn Chipperfield, chairman of Drury’s board of trustees. “Dr. Manuel has demonstrated the leadership skills that will be critical to maintaining Drury’s high academic standards while driving forward to continued success. Just as importantly, he has a Drury personality — he understands and he appreciates the unique culture of Drury and of Southwest Missouri. We have no doubt that both he and Betty Coe will quickly become an integral part of the Springfield community as Drury continues in its efforts to reach out and connect with our broader constituencies.”

Dr. Manuel was one of three candidates who visited campus in late September and early October. The other two were: Dr. David Steele of San Jose State University and Dr. David McInally of Allegheny College in Pennsylvania. Candidates met with students, staff, faculty, alumni, and area business and civic leaders. Following the on-campus interviews, the search committee made a recommendation to the board of trustees. The board of trustees made a final vote during its meeting on Oct. 26.

“This has been a year-long journey for the search committee,” Chipperfield said. “We started with 65 candidates, narrowed that to three and we’ve landed on the best candidate to take Drury into the future. I can’t thank the search committee enough, and the meticulous and deliberate process they went through to include all voices in the decision, including: students, faculty, staff, alumni and community members. While this was a board decision, we can definitely say that choosing Dr. Manuel as Drury’s 17th president was an example of shared governance.”

The search for the 17th Drury president began in August of 2011 when current Drury President Todd Parnell announced that he would retire in May of 2013. The first presidential search committee meeting convened in November of 2011. The search committee was made up of eight members of the board of trustees, four faculty members, two staff members, one student and one alumna, plus five non-voting members. 65 people from diverse backgrounds applied for the position, and, after a series of phone and video interviews, five were invited to in-person, off-campus interviews in September, and the final three candidates emerged from that series of interviews.

President Parnell took over as Drury’s interim president on June 1, 2007, following the resignation of Dr. John Sellars. A 1969 Drury graduate, Parnell applied for the presidency and was named Drury’s 16th president on Jan. 31, 2008. Parnell will be 65 when he retires in May of 2013.

Media Contact: Mark Miller, M.A., Associate Director of Marketing and Communications, Office: (417) 873-7390, Mobile: (417) 839-2886, Email: markmiller@drury.edu

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