Head of Navy introduces new NPS president in Monterey
THE U.S. Navy’s top brass was in Monterey this week to announce the Naval Postgraduate School’s new president and honor the outgoing head of the university.
During a ceremony at NPS Wednesday morning, Secretary of the Navy Richard V. Spencer welcomed retired vice admiral Dr. Ann Elisabeth Rondeau to lead the school. Rondeau, a 38-year veteran of the Navy, will succeed current NPS president Ronald A. Route in early 2019. Route has been at NPS for five years.
“Admiral Rondeau brings with her an unparalleled record of leadership and achievement as a university president, change agent, officer and leader,” Spencer said. “At every level, she’s been a champion for students, teachers, and cutting-edge research, and I am confident she is the right person to build on the great evolutionary work that’s been done so far to take this institution, and the naval enterprise it serves, to the next level.”
Rondeau is the president of the College of DuPage, a two-year community college in Illinois. She previously served as president of National Defense University, and will be the 50th person to serve as the Naval Postgraduate School’s president/superintendent over its long history of defense-relevant graduate education and research.
“This opportunity to serve and help lead the Naval Postgraduate School is a privilege and honor,” Rondeau said at the event. “NPS is a brilliant place where individual and collective genius come together in teaching, learning and exploration, resulting in the premier educational research institution in all of ” the U.S. Department of Defense.
Rondeau called Spencer’s “intent and strategic vision” for NPS “loud, clear, strong and validating.”
Congressman Jimmy Panetta was among those who attended the ceremony, which also included NPS students, faculty and staff. “I met the secretary of the Navy back in D.C., and he invited me to be there,” Panetta told The Pine Cone after the event. “He’s a big fan of NPS.”
Spencer recognized Route for an “exemplary” five years of leadership at the university and presented him with the Navy Distinguished Civilian Service Award, the highest award the Navy secretary can present to a civilian employee.
Route’s “leadership as an educator, businessman and officer will live on in the achievements of all of those students lucky enough to have benefited by his experience,” Spencer said.
Route said it had been an honor to serve as the NPS president, an institution he said he’s held “in the highest regard since I was a student here in the operations research program.”