Dunn set to begin five-day tour of 13 Michigan cities and Chicago

by Cheryl Roland
| WMU News

KALAMAZOO, Mich.— Western Michigan University President John M. Dunn will spend five days—Feb. 27-March 3—covering 1,500 miles by bus to say farewell to supporters and shine a light on the University's current and emerging strengths.

WMU President John M. Dunn's Farewell Tour.

Traveling across Michigan in a specially wrapped bus, John and Linda Dunn will stop in 13 Michigan cities for farewell events and conclude the tour in Chicago. The bus tour and a series of alumni events around the nation starting Feb. 12 begin a series of events set to celebrate Dunn's decade as president. He is scheduled to retire June 30.

  • Monday, Feb. 27, will include a morning reception at the WMU College of Aviation in Battle Creek, a luncheon reception at WMU Cooley Law School in Lansing, and an evening celebration at the Amway Grand Plaza in Grand Rapids.
  • Tuesday, Feb. 28, features a luncheon reception at Weber's Inn in Ann Arbor and an evening reception at the Detroit Athletic Club.
  • Wednesday, March 1, will feature a morning reception at the WMU Cooley Auburn Hills campus, a luncheon at Flint Golf Course, and a dinner reception for the Saginaw, Midland and Bay City area slated for the Frankenmuth Brewery.
  • Thursday, March 2, begins with a luncheon reception at Traverse City's Park Place Hotel and concludes with an evening reception at the Shoreline Inn & Conference Center in Muskegon.
  • Friday, March 3, starts with a morning reception at the WMU Homer Stryker M.D. School of Medicine in Kalamazoo, continues on to a luncheon reception at the WMU-Southwest campus in Benton Harbor, and concludes with an evening reception at the University Club in Chicago.

The tour is being coordinated by the WMU Development and Alumni Relations Office. Those interested in attending any of the events can go to MyWMU.com/DunnFarewell to reserve a spot at any scheduled event. The cost to attend a morning receptions is $15. Luncheon receptions are $25, and evening receptions range from $30 to $55 per person.

Fundraising efforts

Photo of WMU President John M. Dunn.

Dunn

The Dunn tour site also includes details on how to make a gift to a special fundraising effort to benefit four causes of particular interest to John and Linda Dunn—the Student Emergency Fund, the Seita Scholars program, the Bronco Marching Band and the University Art Collection. The WMU Foundation board recently honored the Dunns by creating a $250,000 fund to match gifts made to the four funds. Gifts will be matched 1-to-1 until the fund is exhausted.

Additional events

Additional events to honor the Dunn presidency include a Friday, April 7, campuswide celebration at Miller Auditorium, a May gala at the WMU Stryker School of Medicine and a number of celebratory events planned for smaller campus and community groups.

The end of an era

Dunn announced Aug. 1 that he would retire June 30, 2017, closing out a transformational 10-year era that touched every part of the University. The launch of the WMU Stryker School of Medicine, an affiliation that created the WMU Cooley Law School, a focus on sustainability, and the establishment of programs for veterans and former foster care youth that became national models are among the initiatives most often cited in describing the Dunn presidency.

In addition, nearly $500 million in construction projects, fundraising success, growth in international representation and diversity on campus, and a dramatic increase in WMU's honor student population changed the campus environment.

A campuswide search committee is working to find the next president of WMU. Its goal is to identify that person by the end of this academic year.

At the request of the WMU Board of Trustees, Dunn has agreed to serve for a year as president emeritus following his retirement. In that capacity, he will undertake assignments as requested by trustees and the new president.