7/19/97, Times Argus


By Robert Piasecki - Times Argus Staff

PLAINFIELD - Barbara Mossberg, a former administrator at a private university in California, has been named the new president of Goddard College.

Goddard's board of trustees unanimously elected her as the a college's eighth president.

For the past year, Mossberg served as interim dean of the school of arts and sciences and special adviser to the president of National University in San Diego, California.

Mossberg, 48, said the opportunity to work at Goddard is "an educator's dream." "It is an honor to be associated with Goddard's mission and to have the chance to move it forward," Mossberg said. "My role is to insure that all of us understand what is at stake in preserving and advancing Goddard's unique capacities to contribute to liberal arts leadership."

Paul Blanc, the chairman of Goddard's board, called Mossberg's appointment "a coup" for the 59-year-old progressive college.

"She is a truly innovative educational leader on an internationally recognized level," Blanc, said. "This new leadership marks a further step forward for Goddard, which has been demonstrating exceptional vitality and growth over the least year."

Steve Shapiro, the faculty's representative on the board, also hailed Mossberg's selection, saying it signaled the start of a "new, more collaborative relationship between the trustees and the rest of the Goddard community."

Goddard has been without a president since Richard E. Greene resigned in August 1996 following months of intense criticism about his "top-down corporate management style."

A 10-person committee, including faculty, students, staff administrators and trustees, began a nationwide search for a new president in October.

The committee interviewed six finalists for the position, including Provost Jane Sanders, before selecting Mossberg last month.

Sanders has been the college's top adminstrator since Greene departed. Mossberg said Sanders is expected to stay on and perform a variety of roles that "maximize, her many talents."

Mossberg, a Fulbright Scholar, who is well-known in progressive education circles, previously served with the American Council of Education in its Office of Women in Higher Education.

A published author and poet, Mossberg earned a doctorate in literature from Indiana University and later co-founded the University of Oregon's highly regarded American Studies Program.

Her 1983 book about the poet Emily Dickinson won the Choice Award for Outstanding Academic Book. She is currently writing a book about the relationship between chaos theory, education and leadership.