Dr. Alan Ray, Fisher College's ninth president, will step down at the end of the 2019-2020 academic year.
Alan Ray, President of Fisher College since 2017, will step down from his role at the end of the 2019-2020 academic year.
Fisher College Board of Trustees have named current Executive Vice President Steven Rich to become the College’s Interim President upon the completion of Dr. Ray’s contract on June 30, 2020.
Alexandra Bartsch, chair of Fisher’s Board of Trustees, said that, “When we hired President Alan Ray three years ago, we knew he was aligned with Fisher College’s goal of providing a first-class education to our students and that he would do his utmost to maximize the full potential of this wonderful institution. Dr. Ray did all that and more. Fisher’s reputation, academic excellence and financial management are stronger than ever.”
In his message to the Fisher community, Dr. Ray thanked the Fisher College community for being “Incredibly welcoming since I first arrived on campus. The support of the College and its strategic reforms by faculty and staff, students, donors, and the Board, as well as our Back Bay neighbors, all contribute to the success we have had in keeping Fisher at the forefront of providing pre-professional higher education, and equipping our students with the tools they need to achieve their dreams.”
Dr. Ray became Fisher’s ninth President July 1, 2017 after serving as President of Elmhurst College in Illinois. Born and raised in Oklahoma, Dr. Ray graduated summa cum laude in philosophy from the former St. Thomas Seminary College in Denver. A former attorney, he holds a PhD in religious studies from Harvard University and a JD from the University of California, Hastings. Dr. Ray is a citizen of the Cherokee Nation and his scholarship and teaching have focused on issues in Native American culture and federal Indian law.
Rich, a Fisher College employee since 2001, will serve as Interim President while the Board of Trustees undertakes the search for Fisher’s tenth President. Rich holds a Bachelor of Science in Accounting from Salem State University and a Masters of Business Administration from Suffolk University.
Highlights of Fisher College during Dr. Ray’s presidency include:
- New vision and direction for Fisher College, as set out in Moving Fisher Forward: The Strategic Plan for Fisher College 2018-2023
- An equity-to-debt ratio of nearly 5:1 and an S&P bond rating of BBB+
- The federal government’s Financial Score Card rating of a perfect 3.0
- Improved College reputation: three straight years of growth in U.S. News & World Report’s Regional Colleges North overall rankings, moving from #34, to #21 to #17 in 2020
- In 2020 Fisher broke into the Top Ten U.S. News Best Value Schools for Regional Colleges North
- In 2020 Fisher was rated #1 in Regional Colleges North in the new U.S. News category of Social Mobility
- New academic programs and concentrations, undergraduate and graduate, in high-growth fields including:
- information technology
- game development
- early childhood development and education
- counseling psychology
- criminal justice
- MBA focuses in sport management and accounting
- Launch of the Graduate and Professional Studies division to modernize and expand Fisher’s undergraduate and graduate online learning capabilities
- Expanded athletics program and lease of new, more convenient fields and facilities
- Post-graduation success improvement: 96% of May 2018 graduates responding to survey reported they were employed, continuing their education or serving in the military within six months of graduation
- Creation and launch of the Advancement and Alumni Engagement Office, resulting in more funds raised, more donors, more new donors, and adoption of an industry-standard data management system
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