Although Bill Perry is entering his last year as president of Eastern, he will still have plenty of hobbies to keep him busy.
“My interests and hobbies are mathematics, history, languages, hiking and working out,” Perry said.
He said he even enjoys weight-resistance training.
President Perry said his job consists of various obligations, including providing general leadership for the university, administering and directing, developing and maintaining positive public relations, and raising private funds in support of university programs and scholarships.
“I chose EIU for its high quality of academic programs, real belief in excellence and its deep sense of purpose,” Perry said.
Perry was inaugurated as president in 2007, and his final year will be 2015.
Prior to Eastern, he worked at Texas A&M University as professor, dean and finally vice-provost for five years.
Perry said he attended Park College as an undergraduate where he studied math and history, and he obtained his master’s and doctorate degrees at the University of Illinois.
Perry said his overall goal is to continue to build the excellence of Eastern’s academic programs.
“I have learned that there is a strong bond between student and university,” Perry said.
Perry said his advice for all Eastern students is to give their absolute best every day.
“It does not matter what you are involved in, you will get great satisfaction of that and be proud of yourself,” he said.
President Perry is not the only administrator with interesting hobbies.
Blair Lord, provost and vice president of academic affairs, said he enjoys sailing, woodworking, antiquing and traveling, including visiting his daughters in Massachusetts and his hometown in California.
He said he came to Eastern in search for a position that allowed him to be in charge.
“It worked out, EIU chose me and I chose EIU” Lord said.
Lord said he attended the University of California, Davis where he obtained his bachelor’s and master’s degrees in economics.
He recently celebrated his 13th anniversary as the provost of Eastern.
Being the provost means Lord is the chief academic officer, in charge of overseeing academic services and recognizing student organizations.
Lord said the academic affairs division is responsible for all formal educational activities that take place.
Prior to Eastern, he said he worked at the University of Rhode Island in the College of Business as a faculty member, then chair and finally provost for seven years.
He said the goal is to successfully visit the North Central Association, which provides regional accreditation.
“We want to aspire to be the best comprehensive university,” Lord said. Lord said he also wants to welcome students back to campus.
“We are delighted to have you back,” Lord said. “Engage with student opportunities and challenge our faculty.”
Dan Nadler, vice president of student affairs, has worked at Eastern for over nine years.
In his spare time he enjoys traveling, coaching baseball, performing community service, and supporting the Eastern Panthers.
“My goal is for every student to become involved in some community service work,” Nadler said.
Nadler attended Southern Illinois University, and obtained a bachelor’s degree in liberal studies, a master’s degree in speech communication, and a doctorate in higher education.
“As the senior student affairs officer, I am responsible for leading and managing the division which includes 17 departments,” Nadler said.
Nadler said he is also a professor in the department of counseling and student development, where he directs graduate student research.
He said he chose Eastern for its excellent education at an affordable price, and its faculty and staff that care deeply about students.
“It is my hope that every student experiences a high degree of satisfaction with EIU, graduating with the knowledge and skills necessary to make a significant difference,” Nadler said.
His message for students is to become actively involved in the classroom, in co-curricular activities, and in the community.
“Every student can make a difference and leave a legacy at EIU,” Nadler said.
Like Perry, Chris Dearth, the new admissions director, also likes to stay in shape.
“I once attended a 5K in New Jersey called Zach’s Run,” Dearth said.
Zach’s Run funding goes to research on a cure for a rare enzyme condition called MPS 2, also known as Hunter syndrome.
He said he likes to run, read historical biographies and spend time with his family.
Dearth graduated from Richard Stockton College, where he obtained his bachelor’s degree in marketing, and later received his master’s degree at Duquesne University.
Prior to Eastern, he was a director for seven years at the State University of New York at Fredonia.
He said he chose Eastern because of the campus community.
“It’s a large institution that feels like a small college,” he said.
Dearth is currently in charge of recruitment of new students and reviewing applications and offers of admissions.
Dearth said he hopes to make the admissions process as transparent as possible for new students.
“The goal is to create more awareness of the benefits of attending EIU across the state, and surrounding states,” Dearth said.
Dearth said he wants to be able to connect with students.
“If you see me on campus, I hope you find me approachable,” Dearth said. “Get involved, enjoy your time and show school spirit.”
Debby Hernandez can be reached at 581-2812 or [email protected]