New Jersey's Georgian Court University has appointed its first man as president in its 107-year history.
La Salle University provost and academic affairs vice president Dr. Joseph Marbach will also be the Lakewood-based Catholic school's first lay president.
Marbach will succeed Sister Rosemary Jeffries, who will step down after 14 years in June.
"The cliché that we stand on the shoulders of giants could not be more apt in recognizing the vision and work of Sister Rosemary in preparing Georgian Court to survive and thrive as an institution of higher learning in the 21st century," said Marbach in a prepared statement. "She has done this by expanding the enrollment universe, improving the campus infrastructure, designing new curricular offerings and entering into strategic alliances with Meridian Health and other universities and colleges. Part of my task will be to build upon and expand these initiatives."
Trustees chair Lesa Lardieri-Wright said Marbach is a "proven leader, a respected scholar and an entrepreneurial-minded administrator with a lifelong commitment to Catholic higher education."
The married 53-year-old Florence, New Jersey resident has three children.
Georgian Court was founded by the Sisters of Mercy on an estate that once belonged to financier George Jay Gould. The formerly all-female school became coeducational in 2013. It had 1,621 undergraduate and 687 graduate students in the fall semester.