WMU News

Board gives Haenicke 'outstanding evaluation'

Sept. 19, 1997

BATTLE CREEK, Mich. -- The Western Michigan University Board of Trustees Sept. 19 gave WMU President Diether H. Haenicke "an outstanding evaluation" in its annual review of his performance, citing more than a decade of achievement at WMU.

In its last evaluation of Haenicke, the board gave him a final pay raise of 6.4 percent and a one-time parting bonus of $20,000 in recognition of 13 years of meritorious service to the University. Haenicke announced his resignation from the presidency earlier this year, to take effect July 31, 1998. He intends to return to the faculty.

"You are a master builder, not only of bricks and mortar but of institutions as well, and WMU has benefited greatly by your service," said Trustee Richard F. Chormann of Kalamazoo, chairperson of this year's ad hoc presidential evaluation committee.

"Thank you, Diether, for sharing so much with us, and congratulations on another outstanding evaluation by this board," Chormann told Haenicke. Chormann earlier had cited Haenicke's wife, Carol, for her "grace, poise and kindness (that) has brought so much to our University.

"Together," he said, "you have forged a rich partnership for WMU that will not soon be forgotten.

"We look forward to your leadership, your compassion and your untiring sense of humor as together we experience your last year as our president with you," Chormann said.

Haenicke's salary for 1997-98, effective retroactively to July 1, becomes $181,000. He has given $70,000 in salary raises to the University and made an additional deferred gift of $100,000 together with his wife, Carol, since becoming president in 1985.

In his remarks to the board on Haenicke's performance, Chormann pointed to more than $320 million in new and improved facilities, nearly $100 million in private gifts to WMU and increased recognition and support from the state Legislature in the last decade.

He also noted that Haenicke has led WMU to new heights in research and in graduate education while maintaining the University's commitment to undergraduate instruction. Research support has increased six-fold to $25 million a year and the number of doctoral degree programs WMU offers is expected to reach 25 by the time he leaves office.

"You have accomplished that most difficult of tasks -- an actual, palpable, undeniable improvement in the very stature and substance of this University," Chormann said. "WMU has become an ascending national university whose reputation, often previously undervalued, is beginning to catch up to the reality it has become -- an institution looking outward, moving upward and dynamic in every way."

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