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New President at Thomas More University Named

Thomas More University announced its new president on Wednesday morning.

Joseph L. Chillo will begin in the role on June 1.

He has been president at Newbury College in Brookline, Massachusetts since 2014. He is also a professor of humanities and has taught first-year seminar and courses in American history.

Newbury College announced in December that spring 2019 would be its last term in operation before closing its doors.

Chillo will greet the campus community on Thursday, May 23, outside the Mary, Seat of Wisdom Chapel at 10 a.m.

“While Thomas More University was blessed with a pool of excellent candidates who met our presidential qualifications, it was Dr. Chillo who emerged as our unanimous choice for this appointment given his executive, academic, and administrative experience, along with his energy, insights, and collaborative style,” said Board of Trustees Chair Judith Marlowe, Ph.D.  

Chillo replaces Dr. Kathleen Jagger, who has served as interim president of the Crestview Hills university since the departure of David Armstrong, who left last year to assume the presidency at St. Thomas University in Miami, Florida.

During his presidency at Newbury, the college increased its fundraising, received its largest donation ever, built a nationally-recognized Student Success Center, and established the Center for Excellence in Learning and Teaching, a news release said.

He served as executive vice president and vice president for enrollment management and dean of admissions at Newbury from 2008 to 2014.

Chillo, a first-generation college graduate, earned his bachelor’s degree at Binghamton University, a Master of Public Administration at Long Island University, and a Doctor of Law and Policy at Northeastern University. With more than 25 years of private, higher education experience, prior to Newbury, his past positions include senior leadership roles at Colby-Sawyer College, Wheelock College, and St. Thomas Aquinas College.

“It is a great honor and my distinct privilege to be selected to serve as Thomas More University’s 15th president,” Chillo said.  “I look forward to working with the entire TMU community as someone who serves as a mission-driven, servant leader dedicated to academic and student excellence. I strongly believe that Thomas More University is well positioned for the future and has the unique opportunity to create a bold and visionary future for Catholic higher education.”

“His enthusiasm for leading Thomas More forward into our second century of educational excellence inspired by the Catholic Intellectual Tradition focuses on preparing learners of all ages for life’s opportunities and challenges,” said Marlowe. “Optimism, stewardship, team building based on trust, and mutual respect are the bedrock of his approach to leadership.  We are grateful that he has accepted our offer and very pleased to welcome Dr. Chillo to our campus and community.”

Chillo plans to focus on TMU’s future through emphasis on expanding academic program development across the institution, creating a dynamic student experience, building local, regional, national, and international partnerships that boost student and alumni opportunities as well as fundraising. 

-Staff report

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