Posted: May 18, 2005

Contact: Doug Anderson,, 651-201-1426

The Minnesota State Colleges and Universities Board of Trustees on Wednesday awarded president emeritus status to four presidents who are retiring.

The retiring presidents are: Sharon Grossbach of Hennepin Technical College in Brooklyn Park and Eden Prairie, Orley Gunderson of Northland Community and Technical College in East Grand Forks and Thief River Falls, Darrell Krueger of Winona State University in Winona and Ken Peeders of Minnesota State Community and Technical College in Detroit Lakes, Fergus Falls, Moorhead and Wadena.

Board of Trustees Chair Robert Hoffman said, "There are no finer presidents within our system than these four individuals. All of us have benefited from their skillful leadership, learned from their wise ways and been inspired by the high standards they set."

President emeritus status is awarded - upon recommendation of the chancellor - to a president or former president who has provided exemplary service, completed at least five years as president of a state university or college and who is retiring from employment with the Minnesota State Colleges and Universities system.

Sharon Grossbach has led the system's largest technical college for the past 10 years. "She has had a distinguished career as an educator and in many other capacities throughout Minnesota," said Chancellor James H. McCormick. "Her vitality brings great energy to everyone she is around. Her hard work has produced outstanding results and leaves a rich legacy." She retires June 30.

Orley Gunderson has the distinction of being the longest-serving two-year college president in the system. "He has been a visionary leader through 25 years of growth and change at Northland Community and Technical College. What's more, he has been a tireless advocate for students of all ages, for the people of this region and for public higher education," McCormick said. His retirement takes effect July 31.

Darrell Krueger has served as president of Winona State University since 1989. "President Krueger made a good university better in every way. He has a steadfast and passionate devotion to raising the bar for Winona - its level of excellence, its delivery of academic service and the stature of its reputation. He stands as a model that inspires those around him to love learning and value professional and civic leadership." He retires July 17.

Ken Peeders has served as president of Minnesota State Community and Technical College since 2003 when the Detroit Lakes, Fergus Falls, Moorhead and Wadena campuses joined to form the new college. Previously, he served as president of Fergus Falls Community College. McCormick noted, "Ken Peeders is second to none in knowing how to deliver high-quality programs at a public institution of higher education. What drives him is the difference this institution makes for the economic vitality and the quality of life in this region." His retirement takes effect June 30.