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Dr. Kathleen M. Murray

Kathy Murray

On July 1, Kathleen Murray became the 14th president of Whitman College.  Previously she was provost and dean of the faculty at Macalester College, where she led the academic program of one of America's finest liberal arts colleges, planned a new $70 million fine arts center and played a key role in the development of Macalester’s strategic plan. Prior to Macalester, she was provost at Birmingham-Southern College in Alabama for three years.

President Murray received her Bachelor of Music degree from Illinois Wesleyan University in 1979, then obtained her Master of Music in piano performance from Bowling Green State University in 1982 and her Doctor of Music in piano performance and pedagogy from Northwestern University in 1989. Over the course of nineteen years, she was a member of the piano faculty, dean of the Conservatory of Music and dean of the faculty at Lawrence University in Wisconsin. A frequent performer, she is also a clinician and adjudicator both nationally and internationally, as well as the author of numerous articles on music and music education. She is recorded on the CRI label.

Dr. Murray is a passionate advocate of the liberal arts and the residential learning experience. She firmly believes that her undergraduate years in such a setting developed her potential as a scholar and artist, laying the foundation for her rewarding career and life.

As president of Whitman College, Kathy looks forward to close connections with the entire community. She loves to travel when she has the opportunity and recalls a hike up Mount Kilimanjaro as being one of her high points, literally and figuratively.

What others have to say about Dr. Kathleen M. Murray

Kathy Murray brings an extraordinary background in the liberal arts to Whitman. As a teacher, scholar, and administrator, she has the experience and character that will allow Whitman to achieve great things during her Presidency. Kathy is also just an incredibly kind, funny, and engaged person and I know the Whitman community will enjoy getting to know her as much as I have.

- Bradley M. McMurchie '84, Chair of the Board of Trustees

I am thrilled that Kathy will be the next president of Whitman College. She is a proven leader, excellent communicator, and articulate advocate for liberal arts education who will build on the strengths of the college while effectively meeting the challenges that face liberal arts institutions today. Under her leadership, Whitman will continue to provide an excellent education for its students as she guides the college to new levels of achievement. Kathy truly understands how to support the faculty as teachers/scholars while challenging us all to reach our full potential. It is an exciting moment for the college as it transitions to the most promising phase of its distinguished history.

- David Schmitz, Robert Allen Skotheim Chair of History and Chair of the Faculty

(Kathy) really embodies all of Whitman's values, and I am confident that she can keep in mind these core themes of what makes Whitman such a unique and special place, while taking our college and our community to new and unanticipated heights. I got a very good impression of her willingness to listen to student concerns and address them with speed, competence, and sensitivity. She is well-versed on issues that affect higher education in general and Whitman specifically. She will be a passionate and ardent spokesperson for the College and all that we have to offer.

- Jack Percival '16, Student

Read the press release announcing the appointment of Dr. Kathleen M. Murray as Whitman College’s 14th president »

Visit the President's Office page »

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