PSR's Board Chair's Letter to Broader Community

June 26, 2013

Over the last year, PSR has been working on a new vision for theological education. Last week, Board Chair Julien Phillips sent a letter to members of the PSR community outlining some of the challenges and opportunities this work has presented us with, and news about next steps:

  • On April 18, the Board of Trustees approved seven recommendations developed by the Commission on Strategic Direction, that will permit PSR to move deliberately toward the new vision adopted last fall. This vision commits us to the preparation of spiritually-formed, theologically-rooted leaders for social transformation--a re-statement of PSR's mission that embodies PSR’s historic commitment to social justice and responds to new realities in the world.

  • This month will see some transitions in leadership. President Riess Potterveld will begin a new position on July 1, as President of the Graduate Theological Union. Kathi McShane will be leaving the position of VP of Advancement and Executive Director of the Commission on Strategic Direction to move on to other endeavors. Bernard Schlager replaces Tat-Siong Benny Liew as Dean & VP of Academic Affairs.

  • The Board has taken responsibility for identifying an Acting President for the immediate future, and has established a presidential search committee, comprised of trustees, faculty, staff, and students, to find a permanent president who will begin her/his term in 2014. 

Finally, Phillips shared with us his hopes for the future, saying, “It is my honor and my privilege to serve as your new Board Chair. I accepted this position because I know what reserves of strength and support exist in the PSR community. Institutions evolve, leaders change, the ways in which PSR carries out our mission will change, not just to be sustainable, but to be faithful to our mission and to what the wider world needs.”

If you have questions or thoughts you’d like to share with us, please contact Katherine Kunz, Director of Advancement & Alumni/ae Relations, at 510/849-8216, or by email at