President Craft to Retire in June 2023

Official Announcement from Board of Regents Chair Mary Ranum

Dr. William Craft, the 11th President of Concordia College, has informed the Board of Regents and the college community that he will retire at the end of his second presidential term, on June 30, 2023. With this early notice, President Craft has given the Board extended time to ensure a successful search for Concordia’s next president and for all at Concordia to prepare for an effective transition.

We are deeply grateful for Dr. Craft’s service and for the ways in which Bill and Anne Craft have together devoted themselves to the mission of Concordia.

President Craft has been an exemplary leader for our college. He has championed Concordia’s commitment to faith and learning, to diversity and environmental sustainability, and to citizenship and work readiness in the liberal arts tradition. Under his stewardship, Concordia completed the most ambitious, comprehensive fundraising campaign in college history. The Concordia endowment has more than doubled over the last decade, increasing support for scholarships and for academic programs. During Dr. Craft’s tenure Concordia has experienced a renewal of the College’s teaching, learning, and recreational facilities with the renovation and new construction of the Grant Center for the Offutt School of Business, the Integrated Science Center, the Jake Christiansen Athletic Complex, and the Center for Student Success. President Craft has strengthened Concordia for the challenges of the 21st century with the repricing of Concordia’s tuition, the move to a Three Schools/One College institutional framework, and by shepherding the defining gift for the Sanford Heimarck School of Health Professions. The recently announced unification of faith and learning initiative embodies the way in which Dr. Craft has honored Concordia’s commitment to its founding mission. Dr. Craft has also established a more active and collaborative partnership with Concordia Language Villages and has promoted the expansion of Concordia’s graduate and continuing studies.

President Craft has followed the example of our wonderful students in being responsibly engaged in the world beyond the Concordia campus. Locally, he has helped frame the renewal of downtown Moorhead, the economic development of Fargo-Moorhead, and the programming of the Tri-College University. In Minnesota, he has chaired the Presidents’ Council for the Minnesota Intercollegiate Athletic Conference and now serves on the Executive and Public Policy Committees of the Minnesota Private College Council, for which he is currently Treasurer. Nationally and internationally, he has served as Chair of the Association of American Colleges & Universities; of Corus International, the global health and development agency; and of the Lutheran Educational Conference of North America.

Working in mission for this great college will always be the highest honor of my professional life. I am forever grateful for the opportunity to work alongside our remarkable students, faculty, staff, and all who fulfill that mission to influence the affairs of the world. Anne and I remain all-in for Concordia for the next 18 months, and every day after." – President William Craft

Once again, we express our deep gratitude to Dr. Craft for his invaluable, far-sighted contributions, which have positioned Concordia to thrive in the decades to come, educating new generations of students to influence the affairs of our world.

The Board of Regents has already begun the work of seeking Concordia’s next president. Proposals from national search consulting firms are being vetted. I will work with other regents to appoint a presidential search committee that will include current and former regents, faculty, staff, student, and alumni/ae representatives. 

The Board looks forward to continuing our partnership with President Craft over the next year and a half and to celebrating our time with Bill and Anne, as we work to choose new leadership for Concordia College.

Soli Deo gloria.

Mary Ranum, CC '78
Chair, Board of Regents