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President Joan Develin Coley

The Board of Trustees of Notre Dame of Maryland University has appointed Joan Develin Coley, Ph.D., emerita President of McDaniel College, to serve as interim President of the University. She will continue in that role until University Trustees appoint a permanent President.

Dr. Coley comes to Notre Dame with a long record of service and success at McDaniel College, where she began in 1973 as a professor of education, a field in which she is a noted expert and author on reading and reading disabilities. During her nearly four decades at McDaniel she served as a department chair, Dean of Graduate Affairs, and Provost, and served as President from 2000 to 2010. She is the first McDaniel President to be appointed from the faculty ranks.

During her Presidency, she successfully transitioned what was then known as Western Maryland College through a comprehensive name change and repositioning, and led the most successful fundraising campaign in the College’s history, exceeding the goal and raising $77 million. She was instrumental in the College’s adoption of an undergraduate curriculum with greater emphasis on global, interdisciplinary and multicultural studies, and oversaw $45 million in campus improvements for academic facilities, student residential life and recreation.

A Philadelphia native, Dr. Coley earned an A.B. with honors from Albright College, and earned her master’s and Ph.D. in education from the University of Maryland. Among the many academic and civic honors bestowed on her are the University of Maryland’s award as Outstanding Leader in Education and the Circle of Excellence honor from the Daily Record for being named on multiple occasions to the list of Maryland’s Top 100 Women.