It was wonderful to see the historic moment that happened on campus in December with the introduction of Dr. Joel W. Martin as the 19th president of Wagner College. I could not be more thrilled with his selection.
Joel is a gifted educator, an accomplished scholar, and a strong advocate for liberal education and the practical liberal arts. That’s exactly what we were looking for as a president going forward. He is the provost of Franklin and Marshall College, one of the esteemed liberal arts colleges in the country. He has been a department chair, held an endowed chair, and been a top administrator at well-regarded universities. He’s well prepared in his experience, academically as well as administratively, to lead an institution like Wagner. In addition, he’s a true scholar.
His wife, Jan Martin, is a special person in her own right. She’s a K-12 science teacher, currently working in York, Pennsylvania. In this economically depressed city, she coordinates a STEAM academy — science, technology, engineering, the arts, and math — working to provide a powerful education to underprivileged kids.
They are the most gracious, loving couple that you could imagine. It’s just a home run in every way. They are a wonderful fit on every level.
I want to thank the search committee and the trustees personally for successfully completing such a challenging task, especially Andy Cortese ’72, who chaired the search committee. He did a phenomenal job and gave an inordinate amount of time. Board chair Warren Procci ’68 H’17 also gave much time and effort to the selection.
For Carin and me, Wagner is a precious place, and it will be very deep in our hearts and minds every day for the rest of our lives. You will never be far away from us in our thoughts.
As Carin and I move on to the next stage of our lives, we’ve been comparing leaving Wagner to parents letting go of a child — they love the child dearly, of course, but it’s time for the child to move out of the home. This situation is always a little threatening to parents — until they see that the child has met her or his soul mate, and they see how wonderful the next stage of their child’s life journey is going to be with a partner like that. I’m convinced that Joel and Jan Martin are those soul mates for Wagner.
— Richard Guarasci, President, Wagner College