President David Rees Evans Inaugurated as Ninth President
THE POWER OF CHOICE: Making a Difference
- Link to Photographs from the President’s Inauguration
- Link to Inaugural Address by President Evans
- Link to Poet Laureate of Vermont Sydney Lea’s blog: “Remarks on David Rees Evans – and a new poem”
- Inauguration Program and list of delegates (pdf version)
David Rees Evans, Ph.D., was formally inaugurated as the ninth president of Southern Vermont College (SVC) on Friday, December 4. The ceremony took place at the Bennington Center for the Arts (BCA) in Bennington and was followed by a reception at the BCA.
President Evans came to SVC earlier this year from Buena Vista University in Iowa where he was Vice President for Academic Affairs and Dean of Faculty. He was selected from a field of over 100 applicants for the position of President at the private, liberal arts College, according to SVC Board of Trustee Chair and alumnus Ira Wagner, class of 1983.
The official investiture event on Friday afternoon included Board members, former SVC presidents Barbara Sirvis and Karen Gross, members of SVC senior leadership, faculty division chairs, student leaders and delegates from other institutions of higher education across the country. Guest speakers included Sarah Bolton, Dean of the College and professor of Physics at Williams College, and Sydney Lea, Poet Laureate of Vermont (2011-2015). President Evans presented his inaugural address and vision for the future of the College, based on the theme, “The Power of Choice: Making a Difference.”
SVC Music Director Eric Despard arranged several selections for the occasion, including the song “Seasons of Love,” sung by an Inaugural choir made up of members of the SVC community as well as singers from Mount Anthony Union High School in Bennington.
In celebration of Dr. Evans’ inauguration, several events took place at SVC and at the Bennington Museum. On Thursday, November 3, the College hosted a faculty education panel titled, “The Power of Choice” in SVC’s Everett Mansion Theatre followed with a reception in Burgdorff Gallery. On Sunday, December 6, an opening reception on “Living Traditions: Turkey and New Mexico,” an art collection by Dr. Evans and his wife, Ursula McCarty, took place at the Bennington Museum. Their exhibit will be available for viewing through December 29.
A native of Los Angeles, President Evans holds a B.A. from Pomona College and an M.A. and Ph.D. from the University of Virginia, all in English. Prior to his post at Buena Vista, Evans was Dean of the Petree College of Arts and Sciences at Oklahoma City University and before that Chair of the Department of English, Speech and Journalism at Georgia College and State University. He has published on various aspects of Early Modern English literature and culture, particularly travel literature and aristocratic and genteel identity. He has spoken nationally and internationally and written extensively on professional issues including faculty hiring, careers, training for administrators, and the future of small private colleges in “The Chronicle of Higher Education” and other publications.