a word from the president
There’s a moving scene in the popular Broadway musical “Hamilton”in which President George Washington asks his longtime aide and then-Secretary of State to help him compose his farewell letter. He recognizes his time to serve the country must come to an end, and he wants to prepare the nation for change.
“I wanna talk about what I have learned/The hard won wisdom I have earned… One last time, the people will hear from me… We’re gonna teach them how to say goodbye.”
Well, I’m no Lin Manuel Miranda, or George Washington for that matter, but I have learned a great deal while leading Belmont University these past 21 years, far more than I could ever convey in
the brief space allotted here. What comes mostly to mind in this moment are the lessons shared with me and my wife Judy as we interviewed hospice patients for our 2008 book “Life Is a Gift.” We talked to 105 people who were quite literally sitting on the front porch of eternity.
We learned what really mattered were relationships. Relationships with God, and relationships with other people. Those relationships begin with our families, but they extend to our neighbors, our friends, our colleagues and more. As my time as Belmont’s president comes to a close, relationships are what stands out to me… The faces of the more than 29,000 students I’ve witnessed crossing
the stage to claim their well-earned degrees. The dedication of my senior leadership colleagues—a ‘Real Dream Team.’ The committed service of our faculty and staff. The unwavering support of our Board of Trustees. The parents, donors, partners and friends who have contributed their time and resources to this University.
I am so incredibly grateful for each of you. As we enter our next chapter, Judy and I will continue to pray for each of you and champion Belmont at every opportunity.