An important figure in Northern Illinois University’s history is back on campus today to celebrate the school’s future. NIU’s tenth president John La Tourette will attend the inauguration of the 12th president, Doug Baker.
La Tourette says he’s impressed with Baker’s understanding of the community in the four months he’s been at NIU. La Tourette says it was easier for him, because he served as NIU’s provost before being appointed to the presidency. Conversely, Baker has had to “quickly assess the situation” since starting July 1st. La Tourette says after email exchanges and meeting with Baker Tuesday, he’s confident that Baker “has a good sense of where the campus has to move.” This was La Tourette’s first visit to campus since a building was named after him three years ago. He served as president from 1986 to 2000 and says the campus looks “much more vibrant” now.
The inauguration gets underway at 3:00 this afternoon in the Holmes Student Center, and is free and open to the public. It will also be streamed live from NIU’s website. Baker is expected to talk about “the four pillars” of his administration: student career success, financial viability, thriving communities, and ethical leadership.