Southeastern President John L. Crain to retire
Wednesday, January 25, 2023
by: Tonya Lowentritt
HAMMOND - After more than 35 years in higher education, Dr. John L. Crain will
retire as President of Southeastern Louisiana University at the end of the current
academic year, by which time a new president is anticipated to be named.
“At the time of my appointment in February of 2009, I told the Board of Supervisors I was humbled by their decision to grant me the extraordinary privilege of leading my alma mater. I am grateful for the opportunity and have enjoyed working with the students, faculty, staff, alumni, and community members,” Crain said. “While I will miss all the wonderful people I have worked with, I am looking forward to the next phase of my life and having more time to spend on other interests and with friends and family.”
“Dr. Crain leaves an indelible mark on Southeastern. His remarkable tenure is defined by his visionary leadership and impeccable character,” said UL System President and CEO Jim Henderson. “The process for selecting the next president will commence soon, engaging stakeholders from throughout the university community and beyond. For today, the focus is giving thanks to President Crain for his decades of service to his institution and congratulating him on a retirement well-earned.”
A native of Franklinton, La., Crain became the 14th president of Southeastern in February 2009 after having served as Interim President from July 2008. He guided the university through several years of sizable state budget reductions, the COVID-19 pandemic, and multiple hurricanes, including Hurricane Ida, which caused significant damage to the Hammond campus and surrounding region.
During his tenure, Southeastern’s campus has seen major facility improvements, including the completion of a new student union and new campus student residential facilities, as well as several new and renovated academic buildings. Multiple new academic programs were launched along with new academic support and campus life initiatives. The Lion Athletics program has seen competitive successes by multiple teams, as well as strong academic achievement by student athletes. The Southeastern Foundation also saw impressive growth, as private fundraising took on a greater sense of urgency during the period of state funding challenges.
Prior to being named President, Crain served seven years as Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs at Southeastern and before that as a faculty member in the Department of Accounting, including two years as President of the Faculty Senate and two years as Department Head.