Dr. David Livingston inaugurated as 10th president of Lewis University

Bree Scott, Co-News Editor

Photo by Bree Scott.
Br. Thomas Johnson passes the presidential chain of office to Dr. Livingston.

Dr. David Livingston’s inauguration as the 10th president of Lewis University was held on the afternoon of April 7. The Board of Trustees of Lewis University, De La Salle Christian Brothers of the Midwest Province, students, staff, faculty and alumni attended the historic event.

Lewis University Student Veterans of America (SVA) and Reserve Officer Training Corps (ROTC) presented the colors. Sabra Thomas, Lewis alumna from the class of 2014, led the inauguration with the singing of the National Anthem.

Many took to the stand to offer their sincerest welcome and congratulations to Dr. Livingston, including Brother Thomas Johnson, Brother Gustavo Ramirez Barba, Brennan O’Donnell, Jay D. Bergman, Laurette Liesen, James Saya, Michael Bulfin, Marie Ryan and Valerie Peterson.

“With fidelity and in the spirit of association, the faculty looks forward to working with Dr. Livingston on the future of Lewis University,” said Liesen, president of the faculty senate. “With knowledge, wisdom and justice, we are confident that he will lead and work with us to create a stronger and better Lewis University for our students.”

The Lewis University Gospel Choir, led by director Zorriante Brown, lifted their voices for the songs “Oceans” and “You Are My Strength.” Although Dr. Livingston’s children, Matt and Sara, could not be in attendance for their father’s inauguration, they were able to extend their support through a video call.

“I think his generosity with his time really goes to what my dad values in life and what he strives to do every day, and that’s to give of himself to those who have less or need more or know less. He’s driven by a passion to share his knowledge and his love with others,” said Matt Livingston, doctor of law (J.D.).

“He’s always been an encourager of my mom, my brother and my own dreams, and freedom and exploration,” said Sara Livingston, Peace Corps volunteer.

Brother Gustavo presented the De La Salle Medallion to Dr. Livingston, on the occasion of the Feast of St. John Baptist De La Salle. The medallion was blessed by Pope Francis.

The Presidential Chain of Office was passed through the hands of representatives of the Lewis community and then ultimately placed on Dr. Livingston’s shoulders. It a “symbol of authority conferred as a sacred trust by the Board of Trustees to the President, as chief executive officer of Lewis University,” said  Russ Smyth, Lewis board of trustees chair.

“Dr. Livingston brings a deep commitment to the Catholic intellectual tradition that seeks to educate the whole person,” said Bulfin, co-chair of the University Staff Affairs Committee (USTAC).  “I think his deep academic background in theology will be a tremendous asset in leading this unique Lasallian institution.”

Dr. Livingston had words of encouragement in his closing speech. “My wish for each of our students is that they leave feeling mastery in their subject area and confidence in their ability to make a living, while also knowing they will enjoy the waves of change that lie ahead because Lewis prepared them with an unquenchable desire to learn,” said Livingston. “I am fortunate, for I have the privilege every day of listening in on this fascinating conversation.”

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