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June 12, 2013?
After nearly nine years as Chancellor at the University of Missouri, Brady Deaton announced his retirement on Wednesday afternoon. Deaton, who has been on campus at Mizzou in some capacity since 1989 and has been the Chancellor since October 4, 2004, will step down effective November 15th.
"I've had a blessed career, there's no question about that. All the ups and downs that come, I'm not complaining about any aspect of it. I'm just looking to the future with great excitement," Deaton said. "Every day that I go to work, it's a better day than when I first began my career."
Deaton will continue to serve as Chancellor Emeritus, with a focus on Mizzou's international development.
University President Tim Wolfe praised Deaton's career and his friendship, calling him, "an unmatched advocate for the University of Missouri."
During Deaton's tenure, Mizzou's total enrollment grew by 28.7%, including a 113% rise in minority enrollment. The University opened 21 new buildings and saw a 46% increase in research grant awards during Deaton's nine years. He also oversaw the $1 billion "For All We Call Mizzou" campaign.
Most noticeably to Mizzou sports fans, Deaton oversaw the school's move from the Big 12 to the Southeastern Conference, which became official on July 1, 2012. In an interview with PowerMizzou.com in May, Deaton said of the move, "It's there as part of what I've done. My role goes way beyond that, but that's one of those incidents that happened. There's a range of things that happened, that affects the whole institution. It's there. And an important set of decisions that we made very carefully. I feel very good about it. Never second-guessed that decision at all."
Just a couple of sentences of Deaton's farewell address on Monday was devoted to athletics. He said the SEC transition has gone smoothly and praised the academic performance of Mizzou's athletes, noting that the Tigers were second in the SEC behind only Vanderbilt across all sports in APR.
"Our commitment is to be number one in academic achievement of our student athletes across the conference," Deaton said.
"Certainly, Brady and Anne Deaton together, have been wonderful leaders for the entire University of Missouri, as the flagship institution of our state," Director of Athletics Mike Alden said in a statement. "The way they've positioned us not only for today, but for the future, is so important, and the opportunities that are ahead of us in Athletics, and really in all areas of Mizzou are so bright because of their leadership, because of their commitment, and because of their passion for the institution. ?
"Brady's counsel, his guidance and his leadership, for me in particular, as my boss, has just been outstanding.? He's as good of a person as I've ever worked with.? He has great character, great integrity, he's got good vision, he'll make a decision and certainly provides sound wisdom and guidance.? We will miss that, because all of those traits have unquestionably helped us elevate our program in all aspects, not just one particular element.? Whether it was the transition to the SEC, whether it's been the growth in our facilities, our academic accomplishments, our competitive achievements, whatever that may have been, he's touched all facets of our program in a transformational way."
The major question: Why now?
"Frankly the absence of any major crises," Deaton said with a smile. "As I began to think about this, and I had some conversations with President Wolfe, now is a good time to take this step. This camps can attract and will continue to attract as it has top notch talent to serve in leadership positions."
With that, Dr. Deaton called his wife, Anne, to the stage.
"We just celebrated our 46th wedding anniversary a few days ago," Deaton said. "It's been a good haul."
Indeed it has.
Click here to read our entire interview from May 26th with Dr. Deaton.
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