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September 23, 2002

John Temple to retire at school year's end

By Michael Terrazas

Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer John Temple announced last week that he is retiring at the end of 2002–03 after 20 years of service to the University.

Temple came to Emory in 1982 after having served as vice chancellor for business and finance at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Temple oversaw a period of phenomenal growth at Emory—arriving just three years after the historic $100 million Woodruff gift, his tenure saw the University’s endowment grow from about $250 million to a height of nearly $6 billion before the recent stock market slump.

Asked what Emory will be losing when Temple is gone, President Bill Chace replied, “Twenty years of full engagement with the University in all its finances and non-academic operations, endowment management, bond indebtedness, facilities, human resources, new construction and, above all, the balancing of income against expenses.”

Indeed, though Temple is most often associated with finance and endowment management, he oversees a range of vital divisions and services, including Human Resources, Facilities Management, Community Services (which includes the Emory Police Department, Parking and Alternative Transportation) and Network Operations.

“My fondest memories of Emory will be all the great people I have had the privilege of knowing and working with over the past 20 years,” Temple said. “They are what I will miss most—the friends and colleagues, and the great satisfaction that comes from accomplishing things that make a difference.”

“Working with John on the Ways and Means Committee has been easy and smooth,” said interim Provost Woody Hunter, speaking of the group responsible for identifying and setting Emory’s fiscal priorities. “His knowledge of the institution, his genuine respect for the academic mission of the University and his comprehensive understanding of finances are invaluable to all of us. And, since he is just down the hall, it is very easy to stay in constant communication.”

Since Temple will remain at the University full-time until summer 2003, he may well be able to help orient his successor; Chace said he hopes to complete a job search by early next year.

The president will chair a search committee that includes Hunter, Professor Dwight Duffus of math; Professor Al Hartgraves of the business school; Vice President for Strategic Development Susan Frost; Emory Hospitals CEO John Fox; and trustees Ben Johnson, John Glover, Doug Ivester, John Morgan and Neal Purcell.

At a Faculty Council meeting held Sept. 17, Chace said he plans to “keep both doors open,” meaning Temple’s successor could come from either academic or the business world, though he said a familiarity and even an affection for the “peculiar animal that is a major research university” would definitely be desirable.

“The committee is deeply interested in finding candidates who have considerable experience in managing large institutions comprising many people, many resources and much ambition,” Chace said. “While it will not limit itself to reviewing the candidacies of individuals solely from the academic world, it will begin its labors with the presumption that most of the most interesting candidates will come from that world.”

For his part, Temple is in no hurry to leave that world. “I expect to be available to assist Emory for some period of time,” he said. “Beyond that, I want to spend more time with my family, playing golf and traveling.”