October 26, 2011
Contact: Karen B. Eldridge, Director of Communications
The Maryville College Board of Directors has new leadership.
Wayne R. Kramer, a 1974 graduate of the College, and Elizabeth A. Bulette were elected chair and vice chair of the College’s governing body on Oct. 21.
“I am confident that the Board will thrive under the new leadership team of Wayne Kramer and Elizabeth Bulette,” stated Dr. Dorsey D. “Dan” Ellis, Jr., in a memo emailed to the College’s faculty and staff on the afternoon of Oct. 21. Ellis, an alumnus of the College’s Class of 1960, has served as chair since 2004. He announced earlier this year that he would hand over the gavel.
Kramer is a senior partner of the Knoxville firm Kramer Rayson LLP, and has served on the College’s Board since 2005.
A third-generation Maryville College alumnus, he is the grandson of Dr. Ralph W. Lloyd, the sixth president of Maryville College. Kramer’s parents, Frank Kramer and Ruth Lloyd Kramer, were members of the College’s Class of 1947. His late wife, Sarah Hardrath Kramer, was an alumnus of the Class of 1974.
He is an elder at First Presbyterian Church in Knoxville, a fellow with both the Knoxville Bar Foundation and the Tennessee Bar Foundation, and a member of the Knoxville Bar Association’s Board of Governors. He serves on the boards of the Melrose Foundation and the Frank & Virginia Rogers Foundation.
In accepting the nomination of the Board, Kramer said a total of 25 members of his family had either graduated or attended Maryville College, adding “no other institution has impacted the life of my family or my own life in a greater way than this College.”
The new Board chair (the 18th person to hold the position in the College’s 192-year history) said he would, in his new role, continue to proclaim the mission of Maryville College so that it could “mold and change the lives of young people for years to come.”
Borrowing lines from the first and third stanzas of the College’s alma mater, Kramer continued: “I will do everything I can, with the help of all of you and everyone else who is a part of this institution, to insure that 200 years from now generations yet to come will stand on this hill, look across Chilhowee’s lofty mountains where they pierce the southern blue and know that the ‘queen of all the highlands’ is a place that has made, and will continue to make, a difference for all those privileged to pass this way.”
In the Oct. 21 memo to faculty and staff, Ellis also announced that Elizabeth Bulette of Frederick, Md., was elected Vice Chair of the Board. A senior consultant for Harvard University’s Center for Public Leadership and a faculty facilitator for the Association of Governing Boards of Universities and Colleges, Bulette has served on the Board of Directors since 2007. She holds a B.S. degree from Hood College and an M.A. from Michigan State University.
Bulette is stepping into a position held by MC alumnus Sheridan H. “Dan” Greaser since 2004. Chair of the College’s Advancement and Building and Grounds committees of the Board, Greaser conceived and organized the College’s first Kin Takahashi Week in 1997 and has continued to lead it. The annual event brings alumni and friends to the campus for manual labor-type projects.
The Rev. W. Judson Shaw of Knoxville, Tenn.; Dr. T. Bryson Struse of Marana, Ariz., an alumnus from the Class of 1961; and the Rev. Sharon K. Youngs of Louisville, Ky., an alumna from the Class of 1979, were welcomed onto the Board as new members.
Ellis, who first joined the Board in 1988, will serve one more year. Greaser leaves the Board having served 22 years. During the College’s annual Founder’s Day Banquet Oct. 20, the two were recognized for their leadership of the College’s Board of Directors.
President Emeritus Dr. Gerald W. Gibson spoke of their “tremendous contributions to the progress of the College” during his 17-year tenure, and he spoke of his friendship with them.
“Dan [Ellis] had served on the search committee that narrowed down the field of presidential candidates when I was being considered, and I can bear witness to his commitment to Maryville and the vital role he has played in the 17 years that followed.
“He is a man who does his homework thoroughly, and that trait served us in good stead over and over as he chaired the Academic Affairs Committee, the Finance Committee, and the Board itself. So, too, have his qualities of integrity, wisdom and love of this College,” Gibson added.
Of Greaser, Gibson said he often referred to him as “a reincarnation of Kin Takahashi,” the 1890s-era alumnus who is credited with starting the College’s first football team and work-study program and spearheading the construction of Bartlett Hall.
“Even though I don’t believe in reincarnation, I am convinced that in his ability to inspire and to work hard in pursuit of a vision, Dan [Greaser] very nearly matches Kin, and I am grateful for what that meant during my years of service,” Gibson stated.
Maryville College is ideally situated in Maryville, Tenn., between the Great Smoky Mountains National Park and Knoxville, the state‘s third largest city. Founded in 1819, it is the 12th oldest institution of higher learning in the South and maintains an affiliation with the Presbyterian Church (USA). Known for its academic rigor and its focus on the liberal arts, Maryville is where students come to stretch their minds, stretch themselves and learn how to make a difference in the world. Total enrollment for the fall 2012 semester was 1,093.