John Crain named President Emeritus

Thursday, October 26, 2023 William S. Wainwright and John L. Crain
by: Tonya Lowentritt

JOHN CRAIN NAMED PRESIDENT EMERITUS - Former Southeastern Louisiana University President John L. Crain, right, has been awarded the title of President Emeritus from the University of Louisiana System Board. Congratulating him is current Southeastern President William S. Wainwright, who recommended Crain for the honor.

     HAMMOND – Former Southeastern Louisiana University President John L. Crain has been awarded the title of President Emeritus from the University of Louisiana System Board. The term “Emeritus” is a title awarded to only a few select individuals in recognition of distinguished and extraordinary service. 
     “The depth of service Dr. Crain has given to Southeastern over his enduring career is rare and admirable,” UL System President and CEO Jim Henderson said. “His invaluable contributions will forever be a source of inspiration to the Lions and the higher education community.”
     A 45-year member of the Southeastern family, Crain obtained a bachelor of science degree in accounting from Southeastern, as well as a master of business administration, and served as a faculty member, faculty senate president, department head, and later as provost and vice president for academic affairs. He was appointed interim president of Southeastern in July 2008 and then served as president from February 2009 until June 2023.
     “The Board of Supervisors extends its heartfelt congratulations to President Crain as we honor his distinguished service and exceptional leadership,” UL System Board Chair Liz Pierre said. “This prestigious title is a testament to his transformative contributions.” 
     “As president, with his accounting background and keen aptitude in financial matters, Dr. Crain was truly the ‘right man at the right time,’ guiding the university through many consecutive years of budget cuts by the state,” Southeastern President William S. Wainwright said. “His calm, professional demeanor helped the university and surrounding community navigate through snow storms, hurricanes, floods, and the COVID-19 pandemic, not only to emerge stronger, but to thrive.”
     Throughout those difficult times, Wainwright explained, Crain remained focused on strengthening the university’s position as a major regional educational resource, launching several new academic programs and new academic support and campus life initiatives.
     During his tenure as president, Crain was instrumental in making significant facility and infrastructure improvements, such as completion of the new Student Union, new residential facilities, and renovations and upgrades to numerous academic buildings, unprecedented successes in Lion athletics, and significant expansion in fundraising through the Southeastern Foundation.
     Also under Crain’s leadership, a unified brand platform was launched with the goals of giving the university a higher profile in the region and state and of positively impacting student recruitment and retention.
     “Dr. Crain fully embraced the university’s Core Values of ‘excellence and caring’ and repeatedly voiced his belief in the importance of ensuring Southeastern’s students receive the very best higher education experience,” Wainwright said. “Those beliefs and his strong leadership have positioned the  university and its students to make a meaningful difference in the community, the region and the world.”

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