CHICAGO, IL (February 15, 2017) — Dr. David Parkyn, president of North Park University since 2006, has announced his retirement to follow the completion of this 2016-17 academic year. North Park University is the university of the Evangelical Covenant Church (ECC).
“With gratitude and respect the Board of Trustees congratulates Dr. Parkyn on the success of North Park University during his 11 years as President. The Board wishes to express our heartfelt thanks for his service and leadership to North Park,” commented Dr. Kristine Strand, chair of the Board of Trustees for the university.
During President Parkyn’s tenure, North Park saw advances on many fronts. Dr. Parkyn presided over Campaign North Park, the largest fundraising effort in the university’s history, raising over $63 million in financial commitments which resulted in the completion of the state-of-the-art Nancy and G. Timothy Johnson Center for Science and Community Life. Under his direction, North Park University has been recognized for its leadership in “first family member to college” student enrollment and retention, as well as the ethnic and socio-economic diversity of the student body. Further, nineteen students have received Fulbright awards, making North Park one of the leading producers of Fulbright recipients of all universities in the United States.
“The Board of Trustees also expresses deep appreciation to Dr. Linda Parkyn, professor of Spanish, who capably led North Park’s Honors Congress,” Dr. Strand continued. “Her leadership of the program was instrumental in the development of Fulbright award winners to date.”
In a letter to the campus community President Parkyn wrote: “The past eleven years at North Park have been personally and professionally fulfilling for both Linda and me. We have come to deeply love this institution, its students, faculty and staff. Together we have made good (perhaps on occasion even great!) strides toward important objectives. Now is a good time for someone else to step into leadership and guide the school into the coming years.”
The North Park University Board of Trustees will announce interim leadership for the university following its meetings, February 17-18. Also, the Board looks forward to leading the process to identify a nominee for the next university president who will guide the North Park community in its aspiration to be the nation’s leading city-centered Christian university. The candidate will be called formally to the position by the Covenant Annual Meeting anticipated in June 2018.
Plans will be announced for a campus appreciation event later this spring. Drs. David and Linda Parkyn will also be honored at the ECC Annual Meeting in Detroit, June 22-24, 2017.
According to ECC president Gary Walter, “President Parkyn’s ethos is for the flourishing of each student. It has been his driving hope that at North Park students would know that each of their lives makes a difference. North Park University’s mission as an intentionally Christian university, is to prepare students for lives of significance and service. Dr. Parkyn has given himself unreservedly to that aim.”
Dr. Strand added, “We wish President and Dr. Linda Parkyn the very best in their retirement as they look forward to more time with family and other pursuits.”