Pete Menjares, Ph.D., took the baton July 28 as the 11th president of Fresno Pacific University—and he’s already running at full speed.
Menjares got a literal hand-off from retiring President D. Merrill Ewert at the national convention of FPU’s sponsoring denomination, the U.S. Conference of Mennonite Brethren Churches, in Omaha, receiving a baton inscribed with Hebrews 12:1: “….let us run with endurance the race that is set before us.”
D. Merrill Ewert told the 2012 graduates what he has told every Fresno Pacific University graduating class for a decade: “Commencement is my favorite day of the year!”
What’s significant about Ewert’s May 5 announcement is that this favorite day was his last as a college professor, administrator and president. Ewert, who became FPU president in June 2002 after a career at Wheaton College, the University of Maryland and Cornell University, will retire July 31, 2012. Pete Menjares, a faculty member and administrator at Biola University, will be 11th president.
Rain damped the grass but not the spirit at the MCC Sale April 13 and 14 on the main FPU campus. Early estimates put the amount raised ahead of last year.
Among the behind-the-scenes highlights was outgoing President Merrill Ewert's introduction of zwiebach to President-elect Pete Menjares. The traditional treat is a symbol of the underlying philosophy of the sale: Doing good can be delicious! Pictured are Ewert (center, selecting a zwiebach from one of the volunteer bakers) and to the right Pete Menjares, Pete's wife, Virginia, and Priscilla Ewert.
As he prepares to retire after 10 years as FPU President, D. Merrill Ewert can look back on many honors. But the Harold Haak Award from the Fresno Compact is particularly meaningful.
“It’s a great honor to receive this award, having known Dr. Haak and then being the person who replaced him at Fresno Pacific. He’s a man I have enormous respect for. I’m literally sitting in the chair in which he sat,” said Ewert, who often tells how Haak recruited him and called FPU a “gift to the Valley.”
Never let it be said Fresno Pacific University President D. Merrill Ewert didn't rise to an occasion--rise, as in 30 feet off the ground in a hot-air balloon. The occasion? The kick-off of FPU's $36 million capital campaign.
Students from Fresno Pacific University are part of transforming the world.
That was the message from FPU President D. Merrill Ewert at the universityâ€™s opening convocation August 31. Students, faculty and staff gathered for the annual event, which marks the end of the first week of classes.
We've got problems here in the San Joaquin Valley. Everybody knows that, but how do we solve them?
What about getting together the folks affected by a problem and talking about it? Passionately, because we care. Respectfully, because we know that those who disagree with us over solutions care just as much as we do.
As simple, or crazy, as that sounds, it's FPU President D. Merrill Ewert's suggestion in this special summer Scholars Speak.