Heidelberg didn’t have to look beyond the campus to find its interim president. Dr. Jim Troha, who has been the vice president for Student Affairs and dean of students the past seven years, will step into the leadership role on July 1.
The Board of Trustees, on campus for its spring meeting and commencement last weekend, made the announcement. Board Chair Sondra Libman said Troha was chosen based on his proven leadership ability, the perspective he brings as a senior administrator and his commitment to the students and the college.
“I am particularly pleased that Jim has accepted this appointment,” said Libman, adding that the close involvement he has had with the development of the college’s vision and strategic planning made him the ideal candidate for the interim position. “We anticipate with Jim’s appointment that the college will continue to move forward.”
Troha will take over for Dr. F. Dominic Dottavio, Heidelberg’s president the past five years. Dottavio announced in April that he would become the 15th president of Tarleton State University in Stephenville, Texas, beginning Aug. 1.
Troha said he’s ready for the new challenge and opportunity. “I am honored and humbled to be asked to lead this institution that I have come to know and respect over the last seven years,” he said. “I look forward, with great enthusiasm, to working with the entire campus community to carry forward the initiatives that Dr. Dottavio has set in motion. I indeed have big shoes to fill.”
Troha came to Heidelberg from Baker University in Kansas, where he had been the dean of students. He also spent two years in England, serving as the dean of students at Harlaxton College, an American study-abroad institution affiliated with the University of Evansville. He received his Ph.D. from the University of Kansas and his master’s and bachelor’s degrees from Edinboro University in Pennsylvania.
In addition to his responsibilities as vice president for Student Affairs, Troha also served in the dual role of vice president of enrollment for three years, enrolling Heidelberg’s largest freshman class in 15 years in the 2005-06 academic year. He also has served as the head men’s golf coach since January 2007.
The board has begun a national search for Heidelberg’s next president.