SRU to stage presidential inauguration Nov. 9 at 11 a.m.


President Behre addresses the incoming freshman class

The formal inauguration and investiture ceremony of William Behre as the 17th president of Slippery Rock University will be at 11 a.m., Nov. 9 in Morrow Field House. The public is invited.

Nov. 8, 2018

SLIPPERY ROCK, Pa. - When William Behre is formally invested as Slippery Rock University's 17th president Nov. 9, it will bring to a close the journey that began with his March 14 hiring by Pennsylvania's State System of Higher Education board of governors.

Behre, who was selected to lead the nearly 9,000-student University following a nationwide search, assumed his presidential duties July 1.

Inaguration seal

The former provost at Georgian Court University, Behre has nearly a quarter century of experience in higher education as an educator, researcher, faculty leader and administrator. Prior to joining SRU he had served as GCU's chief academic officer for four years.

Cynthia Shapira, chair of the State System board of governors, and Daniel Greenstein,

chancellor of the State System, will administer the oath of office, while Greenstein will officially declare Behre president. Jeff smith, chair of the SRU council of trustees, and Armand Policicchio, will present him the presidential medallion and mace.

The 11 a.m. ceremony, which is the centerpiece of SRU's 17-day celebration of the University and Behre's inauguration, will be staged at Morrow Field House. The day's activities begin at 8:30 a.m. with Grand March participants assembling in Patterson Hall, the Alumni House and the Smith Student Center before processing to Morrow Field House for the 11 a.m. investiture.

The processional will include delegates and representatives from higher education institutions and professional societies, trustees, distinguished guests, faculty, staff, students, alumni and community members.

A free campuswide reception will follow in the GrassTex area of the field house.

The ceremony will include delivery of greetings from a number of University-associated affinity groups, including:

• Dallas Kline, president of the Slippery Rock Student Government Association, representing students.
• Ben Shaevitz, SRU professor of physics and president of the Association of Pennsylvania State College and University Faculty, representing faculty.
• Robert McGraw, president of the Coaches Union, who will represent the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees; State College and University Professional Association. Security, Police, Fire Professionals of America; the Office Professional Employees International Union and the Coaches Union.
• Amir Mohammadi, vice president for finance and administration and advancement services and interim vice president of advancement, representing the University's administration.
• Don Huddart, president of the SRU Alumni Association, representing SRU alumni.
• Doug McMullen, chair of the Slippery Rock University Foundation, representing the foundation.
• Jondavid Longo, mayor of Slippery Rock borough, representing the Slippery Rock community.
• Geradline Jones, president of California University of Pennsylvania, representing the higher education community.
• Jeffrey Smith, chair of the SRU council of trustees, representing the council.
• Cynthia Shapira, chair of the board of governors, will bring greetings from PASSHE.

Philip Way, SRU provost and vice president for academic affairs and presiding officer for the inauguration, will recognize delegates attending the ceremony.

Joseph Marbach, president of Georgian Court University, will formally present Behre for his investiture. Marbach is the ninth president of Georgian Court, located in Lakewood, New Jersey, and worked alongside Behre for four years.

Behre has titled his inauguration address "Forging Our Future Together."

A student contingent from SRU's Army ROTC program will present the colors; with the SRU World Percussion Ensemble, directed by David Glover, associate professor of music; the SRU Wind Ensemble, directed by Johnathan Helmick, associate professor of music; the SRU Chamber Singers, SRU Concert Choir and SRU Combined Choirs, all directed by Christopher Scott, associate professor of music, will offer musical selections.

A free campuswide reception, staged in the GrassTex area of the field house, follows the ceremony.

"We have asked those participating in the Grand March to gather at their assigned locations in time to robe and be ready to move out by 10:15 a.m. The processional will depart for the ceremony site at 10:30 a.m.," said Tina Moser, SRU chief of staff and co-chair of the inauguration committee.

To accommodate the Grand March, which begins at the entrance to the Smith Student Center Commuter lot and proceeds south on West Campus Loop to the Field House, both pedestrian and vehicular traffic will be rerouted from 10:20 a.m. - 10:45 a.m.

There will be restricted parking during the morning hours of Nov. 9 in the Alumni House and Morrow Field House parking lots.

"We will have a number of guests on campus for the day and there may be delays in moving traffic through Slippery Rock and on campus. Everyone should plan accordingly." Moser said.

In case of inclement weather, participants in the Grand March will stage from the GrassTex area of the Field House. Any schedule changes will be announced through a campuswide email and on the University website,

Although the University remains open for business and classes are in session, many areas are planning on temporarily having restricted services to allow employees and students to attend.

"This is significant and important day for our campus community," said Philip Way, provost and vice president for academic affairs. "We hope everyone will take the opportunity to participate in some way and welcome Dr. Behre as our new president."

In total, SRU will spend 17 days, Nov. 1-17, celebrating the University and the inauguration of Behre through various activities highlighting academics, the arts, athletics and the University's commitment to public engagement. "Through this myriad of activities, we'll introduce President Behre to our stakeholders and help launch a new era of leadership for SRU," said Rita Abent, executive director for University Communication and Public Affairs and co-chair of the committee.

For more information about inaugural activities, including a schedule of events and directions to the event, visit SRU's presidential inauguration page.

MEDIA CONTACT: Robb King | 724.738.2199 |