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The University of Olivet Board Trustee Tom Kolassa Awarded Emeritus Status After 27 Years of Service

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Tom Kolassa, a member of the The University of Olivet Board of Trustees, has been awarded emeritus status upon his retirement from the board after 27 years of service. Tom was honored with the distinction at the October 21 board of trustees meeting. Over the years, he has served in various capacities, including as board chair from 2013-2021.

Tom provided leadership throughout many of The University of Olivet’s most significant achievements, including having four of the five largest entering classes in college history and doubling the diversity of the student body. During his time on the board, The University of Olivet launched its comprehensive strategic plan, 2020 and Beyond. The record-breaking $47.7 million campaign radically transformed the campus, with millions of dollars invested in renovation and new construction projects across campus. During this same period, the College also accomplished unprecedented new program development, launching 12 new academic and 14 new athletic and co-curricular programs.

In granting emeritus status to Tom, President Steven M. Corey, Ph.D., said, “It has been an honor to serve alongside Tom. He cares deeply about the College and the students we serve. Through his leadership and actions, Tom provided unique and valuable insight and perspectives, earned the trust of his colleagues, and served with great distinction. He is a champion of diversity and inclusion and has dedicated himself to ensuring our students graduate equipped to make a positive difference in their local and global communities. We are grateful for his many years of trustee leadership.”

Tom has remained a steadfast supporter of The University of Olivet since his graduation in 1969. Throughout the years, he returned to the campus for special events, hosted alumni gatherings on behalf of the College, and supported the College with financial gifts. When asked to serve on the board, he did not hesitate.  “I said it would be an honor because Olivet has been so instrumental in my success. I wanted to be a part of the progress and growth of The University of Olivet for future generations,” he said. “I’m most proud of seeing the progress and advancement the College is making in the curriculum, all the new infrastructure and the increase in enrollment. The board and administration dynamic have also seen great improvement.”

Tom led a successful career in the insurance industry, retiring as senior vice president of HUB International of Battle Creek in 2013. He has also served as owner of Infinisource of Coldwater, a company specializing in human resources and employee benefits.

Tom served Battle Creek for two years as city commissioner, two years as vice mayor and two years as mayor, and served on the boards of Starr Commonwealth, Southern Michigan Bank and Trust and Binder Park Zoo.

The University of Olivet Board of Trustees pursues policies and programs in accordance with the College’s academic vision of Education for Individual and Social Responsibility. The board strives to provide the best possible environment for students, faculty and staff to teach, learn and develop their abilities.

Learn more about The University of Olivet by contacting the Office of Admission at 800-456-7189 or admissions@uolivet.edu.

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