The Rev. Dr. John A. Nunes of Valparaiso, Ind., has been elected unanimously by the Board of Regents of Concordia College—New York, Bronxville, to serve as the school’s ninth president, beginning July 1, 2016.
Nunes will succeed Dr. Viji D. George, who announced Nov. 16 that he is resigning from the post on June 30, 2016. George was elected president in 1999 after serving almost 20 years on the faculty.
During George’s presidency, the 130-year-old institution experienced steady growth: operating revenues grew by 150 percent, and enrollment by 95 percent. The college also added graduate degree programs, launched an acclaimed nursing program and upgraded its facilities.
“I believe that Concordia is at a very healthy place, and it is time for a new president who can continue our journey from success to significance and serve as a bridge-builder between the college and its constituencies,” George said in a Concordia, Bronxville, news release.
Nunes, 52, has served for the past two years as the Emil and Elfriede Jochum Chair at Valparaiso University, and plans to finish the current academic year before assuming the Concordia presidency next summer.
“What a marvelous opportunity God is giving me: to serve at Concordia College—New York, a forward-looking, 21st century community of learning,” Nunes said. “I love that this school is peerless with respect to student diversity and deeply rooted in the values that make Lutheran higher education exceptional.”
Concordia Board of Regents Chairman T. Scott Wittman noted that Nunes “was unanimously and enthusiastically selected” by the Board of Regents to be the school’s ninth president.
“John’s unique combination of qualifications, skills and experience is perfect to lead the college forward, building on the 16 years of tremendous leadership provided by President George.”
LCMS President Rev. Dr. Matthew C. Harrison said, “We are very pleased with Dr. Nunes’ call to Bronxville. The challenges our universities face are daunting, but John has the gifts to lead this treasured institution at this time. He will bring a joyous and churchly face, and build upon the strengths of the institution. Of that, I’m confident.”
Concordia University System (CUS) President Rev. Dr. Dean O. Wenthe said Nunes “brings a remarkable skill set and broad experience to the presidency of Concordia College, Bronxville. His sterling commitment to classical Christian categories in a liberal arts education assures a bright and distinctive vision for Concordia’s future.” Concordia, Bronxville, is one of 10 CUS campuses nationwide.
Nunes, an ordained LCMS minister, was president and chief executive officer of Lutheran World Relief (LWR), Baltimore, from 2007 to 2013. LWR is an international, nonprofit organization working to end poverty and injustice worldwide.
Prior to joining LWR, Nunes taught theology at Concordia University Chicago in River Forest, Ill., and served as a management consultant, urban parish pastor and community organizer in Dallas and Detroit.
He holds a Bachelor of Arts degree from Concordia College (now Concordia University), Ann Arbor, Mich.; a Master of Divinity degree from Concordia Seminary, St. Catharines, Ontario, Canada; and both Master of Theology and Doctor of Philosophy degrees from the Lutheran School of Theology at Chicago. He also has received honorary doctorates from Concordia University, Ann Arbor, and Carthage College, Kenosha, Wis.
Nunes is the author of Voices from the City: Issues and Images of Urban Preaching and, with his wife, Monique, the children’s book Little Things Make Big Differences: A Story about Malaria.
Monique Nunes also will be starting work in a new position July 1 — as director of International Programs at Martin Luther School (MLS) in Maspeth (Queens), N.Y.
The school’s Executive Director, Randal C. Gast, said Monique Nunes “brings a vibrancy” to the program, which currently serves 85 students and is projected to grow to nearly 200 students by fall 2017.
Posted Nov. 23, 2015