December 15, 2016: Eric Anderson, Walter C. Utt Professor of History at Pacific Union College, has been elected as the school’s new president from January 9 to June 30, 2017.
“I am grateful to Dr. Anderson for agreeing to take on this important leadership role,” said Board Chairman Bradford Newton, in an announcement on PUC’s website. “He has the experience, vision and commitment to lead PUC during the upcoming search committee process.”
Anderson is a former president of Southwestern Adventist University and had one of the longest tenures in the sister institution’s history. He holds a Ph.D. in history from the University of Chicago and represents the fourth generation of his family to teach at PUC.
He will be tasked with assisting the search for the new PUC president as well as restructuring the school’s budget. Anderson said he was confident about PUC’s future.
Anderson sees partnerships between the college and the wider Napa Valley community as a priority. “We can’t live in monastic isolation up on Howell Mountain,” he said.
Anderson commended current PUC President Heather Knight, who will leave office on January 8, saying she demonstrated “unflagging optimism and strong commitment to PUC’s distinctive mission.” He added that he intended “to build on her achievements.”
Dr. Judy Myers Laue, professor and chair of the department of English at Southwestern, said, “Eric Anderson was one of the nicest things ever to happen to Southwestern. He had a clear academic vision, he made hard choices, and made friends across the campus and in the community. PUC is lucky to get him as president, but we had him first.”