Hartwick College Names Ehmann New Provost, VP for Academic Affairs
Hartwick College President Margaret L. Drugovich announced today that Dr. William J. Ehmann has been named Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs. The appointment, effective July 1, 2019, concludes a four-month national search.
Ehmann was most recently Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs at Marymount University in Arlington, VA. He succeeds Dr. Michael G. Tannenbaum, who is retiring after serving in the role for 10 years.
Ehmann joins Hartwick after a lengthy career at private liberal arts and public institutions of higher education across the country. He brings to Hartwick expertise in place-based experiential education, facilitating innovative strategic and academic program growth, shared governance, and obtaining grant funding. He has also led successful accreditation teams with the Middle States Commission on Higher Education, served as an external reviewer, and was responsible for communications with the NY State Education Department.
As an academic, Ehmann is extensively published in the fields of biology and geology.
“Dr. Ehmann is well-prepared to lead the College’s academic program,” Drugovich said. “For 221 years, Hartwick has been a leader in post-secondary education. Our alumni provide the evidence that experience-enhanced liberal arts education is the best preparation for a lifetime of success. Dr. Ehmann values this approach and is ready to guide and support curricular innovation that builds upon this venerable foundation.”
Previously, Ehmann served two tenures with Mercy College in Dobbs Ferry, NY. He spent three years as Associate Provost for Programs and Planning, and later became the college’s Interim Associate Provost. There he grew access and support services for first-generation college students, including through $6.3M of grants that strengthened student writing and research skills. He also developed new undergraduate programs in the humanities and social sciences, and worked closely with faculty leaders in shared governance.
During his tenure with Marymount, Ehmann established an Enrollment Operations Team that helped raise freshman and graduate enrollments to the highest levels in six years. He also established Rapid Response funds, which help faculty and staff to innovate and prototype ideas for recruitment and retention.
Ehmann previously served at two other upstate New York institutions. At the State University of New York at Plattsburgh, he served as the Assistant to the Provost & Vice President for Academic Affairs and helped teams re-brand the university around place-based experiential education. As an Associate Dean at Empire State College in Saratoga Springs, he managed a strategic plan implementation, developed new nursing programs, advanced graduate education, and helped assure quality in online courses.
“I’m honored to be joining a community that puts the enduring strengths of a liberal arts education into practice, at a time we need Hartwick graduates to take on unparalleled social challenges” said Ehmann. “I look forward to listening to and working with each person who cares about the promise and prominence of Hartwick College.”
Professor of Biology Dr. Peter Fauth chaired the 13-person search committee, which was comprised of College faculty, staff, and students.
“The Provost/Vice President of Academic Affairs position is vital to our institution; it’s at the heart of Hartwick’s liberal arts mission,” Fauth said. “I am confident Dr. Ehmann and the College faculty will work well together to continue offering creative academic opportunities to ensure the success of our students.”
Ehmann earned his bachelor’s degree in earth sciences from the University of Notre Dame. He received a master’s from Brown University in geological sciences, and in 1994 he obtained a Ph.D. in biology-ecology from Utah State University.
He also holds an Executive Certificate from the University of Notre Dame’s Mendoza College of Business in Transformational Non-profit Leadership.
Prior to his career in academia, Ehmann spent four years as a geologist with the U.S. Department of Interior, helping to map America’s strategic minerals at the height of the Cold War, assisting tribal governments, and completing special projects for the U.S. State Department.
He was also a member of the NASA Space Shuttle Program Mission Specialist pool for 20 years.
A native of Kentucky, Ehmann is an avid hiker, fisherperson, and birdwatcher. He is also well traveled, having visited all 50 states, eight Canadian provinces, 14 countries, and lived in Australia for a year.