From the Worldwide Faith News archives

Newberry College Names 20th President

From News News <NEWS@ELCA.ORG>
Date 25 Apr 2000 11:58:19


April 25, 2000


     CHICAGO (ELCA) -- Dr. Mitchell M. "Mick" Zais, 53, will become the
20th president of Newberry College, Newberry, S.C., in August.  Newberry
is one of 28 colleges and universities of the Evangelical Lutheran
Church in America (ELCA).
     Zais is currently chief of staff for the U.S. Army Reserve
Command, Atlanta.  He will succeed Dr. Peter French who retired last
year.  Dr. John Hudgens, Columbia, S.C., has served as Newberry's
interim president since June.
     "Being at Newberry College is like coming home," Zais said at an
April 18 news conference on the college's campus.  "I marvel at how my
top two choices for life after serving my country in uniform -- becoming
president of a small college and settling near family in the Lake Murray
area -- have come together so perfectly," he said.
     "First and foremost, Newberry College should remain a student-centered, 
liberal arts, undergraduate institution.  It should maintain a
curriculum that provides breadth and integration of learning across all
liberal arts and professional disciplines.  It should be a place where
the staff and faculty take pride in being a part of the students'
intellectual and personal growth," Zais said.
     Zais said he plans to strengthen the tie between Newberry College
and the ELCA, link the college more closely to its local community and
improve the campus to accommodate the latest technologies.
     Zais earned a bachelor's degree in general engineering at the U.S.
Military Academy, West Point, N.Y., in 1969.  He earned a master of
science degree in social psychology and organizational behavior from the
University of Washington, Seattle, in 1979, and earned a master of arts
degree in military art and science from the School of Advanced Military
Studies at the U.S. Army Command and General Staff College, Fort
Leavenworth, Kan., in 1985.
     In 1986 Zais earned a doctorate degree in social psychology at the
University of Washington, and in 1990 he was a research fellow at the
National Security Affairs,  National Defense University, Washington,
     Zais' professional military career began in 1969, when he became
parachute platoon leader, 82nd Airborne Division, at Fort Bragg, N.C.
^From 1970 to 1971, he was the rifle platoon leader, 101st Airborne
Division, in Vietnam.  Zais was company commander at Fort Myer, Va.,
from 1972 to 1973, and at Fort Riley, Kan., from 1976 to 1977.
     From 1985 to 1987, Zais served as strategic planner at Fort Lewis,
Wash., and battalion commander in Korea from 1987 to 1989.  He was chief
of operations, planning, training and budgeting at Fort Ord, Calif.,
from 1990 to 1992, and brigade commander there from 1992 to 1993.
     Zais was chief of strategic plans, Office of the Chairman,
Pentagon, Arlington, Va., from 1993 to 1994; executive officer to the
commander-in-chief, U.S. Southern Command, Panama, from 1994 to 1996;
deputy commanding general, Fort Riley, from 1996 to 1998; commanding
general, Coalition Joint Task Force - Kuwait, Kuwait City, 1998; and
commanding general, Joint Task Force Provide Refugee, Fort Dix, N.J.,
     Zais has published numerous articles in scholarly and professional
journals on such topics as curriculum design, leader training and
development, public policy, scientific method and research design,
senior executiveship, the uses of history, stress and its effects, and
organizational development.
     Zais is married to Susan Fincher.  They have two children --
Bradley, 15, and Ashley, 13.  Fincher's great-great-great uncle, J.
Emlon Houseal, was Newberry College's first graduate in 1869.
     Newberry College offers programs in more than 35 major fields of
study with an enrollment of 750 students.

For information contact:
John Brooks, Director (773) 380-2958 or NEWS@ELCA.ORG

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