College of Charleston Bids Farewell to President Benson

College of Charleston Bids Farewell to President Benson

The College of Charleston community gathered on June 27, 2014, to celebrate the accomplishments of President George Benson and to offer best wishes to him and first lady, Mrs. Jane Benson.

Board of Trustees Chair Greg Padgett (right) congratulates President George Benson.

Board of Trustees Chair Greg Padgett (right) congratulates President George Benson.

Benson concludes his presidency on June 30, 2014, and will take a one-year sabbatical before returning to the College to teach in the School of Business.

Dozens of faculty, staff, and members of the Charleston community gathered in Alumni Hall for the two-hour send-off. Attendees thanked Benson for his leadership.

Greg Padgett, Chair of the College of Charleston Board of Trustees, spoke at the gathering. He listed some of Benson’s many accomplishments and thanked him for his seven-and-a-half years of service.

Brian McGee, Chief of Staff and Senior Vice President for Executive Administration, gave brief remarks on behalf of the staff and presented a staff gift to Benson: a framed photograph of the president at Dixie Plantation, signed by staff members. Benson developed a deep appreciation for the College-owned property during his tenure and oversaw several infrastructure projects designed to establish the site as an environmental sciences campus.

RELATED: Read a Q&A with President Benson.
(From L to R) Bob Mignone, Department of Mathematics Chair; President George Benson; and Mike Auerbach, dean of the School of Sciences and Mathematics.

(From L to R) Bob Mignone, Department of Mathematics Chair; President George Benson; and Mike Auerbach, dean of the School of Sciences and Mathematics.

Padgett, on behalf of the College of Charleston Alumni Association, presented Benson with an Alumni Chair, inscribed with a message of “gratitude and appreciation.”

Benson thanked those gathered for making the College such a special institution. He said that what he’ll miss the most about the College is its people. Benson also noted that the faculty are what drive the College’s student-focused culture, which is one of the three core values identified in the College’s Strategic Plan. Benson said that special culture existed long before he arrived and that it is not something for which he could take credit.

Following his return to the College next year, Benson will be a professor of decision sciences in the School of Business and will continue to be involved with the College’s fundraising initiatives. Benson has held a tenured faculty appointment since he first came to the College in 2007.