Robert R. Lindgren began as Randolph-Macon College’s fifteenth president on February 1, 2006.
Since then, new student enrollment has increased 35%, resulting in the largest incoming classes in the college's history. Also, private support of Randolph-Macon has reached an all-time high during his tenure. To date, the college has received nearly $117 million in gift commitments in support of a number of important initiatives including scholarships, academic programs, capital projects, professorships, the library and athletics. Likewise, alumni participation in the Randolph-Macon Fund has grown to historically high levels.
Since arriving in Ashland, President Lindgren has dedicated himself to making connections with students, faculty, staff, alumni, parents and the surrounding communities. In fact, his passion for students has earned him the reputation as “the student’s president.” Through alumni events held throughout the country, he has met thousands of Randolph-Macon graduates and strives to better engage them with the life of their Alma Mater.
President Lindgren is actively engaged in the business and academic communities related to Randolph-Macon. He served on Virginia Governor Robert McDonnell’s Higher Education Commission in 2010-11 and now is the only private college president serving on the Commonwealth’s Higher Education Advisory Committee. Lindgren currently serves on the board of the Virginia Foundation for Independent Colleges, the World Affairs Council of Richmond, the Richmond Forum, and Partnership for the Future. He has recently been appointed to the executive committee of the Annapolis Group, an organization of more than 130 leading national liberal arts colleges across the United States. Lindgren serves as a member of Richmond’s Future Council of Advisors and also serves on the advisory board of Virginians for High Speed Rail. Lindgren recently completed a six year term on the board of directors of the Greater Richmond Chamber of Commerce and has served as chair of the Council of Independent Colleges of Virginia, where he led the group of 29 private colleges and universities in the Commonwealth. He was also elected to the Board of Directors for the Council of Independent Colleges (CIC). Lindgren is also past chair of the Virginia United Methodist Conference's Association of Educational Institutions, representing five United Methodist Colleges and one secondary school in the Commonwealth.
During his tenure, President Lindgren led Randolph-Macon through a successful 10-year reaccreditation process, and most recently through the 5 year review, with the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools. The development and ongoing implementation of innovative Strategic and Campus Master Plans also occurred during his leadership. Lindgren has supported programs that have helped Randolph-Macon gain national recognition for its exceptional faculty and for providing a quality liberal arts education that prepares students for lifelong success in today's changing, global environment.
In April 2011, the College announced Building Extraordinary: The Campaign for Randolph-Macon College, a $115 million initiative designed to take the College to the next level of excellence. To date, under Lindgren's leadership, the college has surpassed the campaign goal, a full 19 months ahead of schedule. Priorities for the campaign include upgrading and building state-of-the-art academic, residential and athletic facilities, increasing the endowment to provide greater opportunities and support for faculty and students in and out of the classroom, and enhancing student outcomes through a more intentional focus on career and graduate school preparation.
The momentum of the Building Extraordinary Campaign has led to the completion of several major projects as part R-MC’s Master Plan: Andrews Hall, a 108-bed residence hall for freshmen which received Gold LEED certification in August 2012 ; a new baseball facility, Hugh Stephens Field at Estes Park; a new tennis complex; the completely renovated Day Field, home to R-MC football and lacrosse teams; and the new John B. Werner Pavilion at McGraw-Page Library. The College has also renovated two classroom buildings, Fox Hall and Haley Hall, and Smithy Hall. Construction of Birdsong Hall, a residence hall for upperclass students, was completed in summer 2014 and fund-raising is aggressively underway for a new Science Building and renovations to the Copley Science Center.
President Lindgren came to Randolph-Macon from the Johns Hopkins Institutions in Baltimore, Maryland, where he served as Vice President for Development and Alumni Relations for nearly twelve years and led two of the largest and most successful campaigns in American higher education. Prior to Johns Hopkins, he served as vice president for the Developmental Alumni Affairs for six years and chief development officer at the University of Florida for ten years, and held prior positions at UF as Assistant to the President and Assistant Dean in the College of Law. He has a well-earned reputation as one of higher education’s leaders in the fields of development and alumni relations.
A native of Muskegon, Michigan, President Lindgren earned undergraduate and law degrees from the University of Florida in 1976 and 1981, respectively, and a master of philosophy degree in management studies from Oxford University in England in 1978, where he was the recipient of a Rotary Fellowship. He was awarded an Honorary Doctorate in Education by the University of Florida in August 2012.
President Lindgren and his wife, Cheryl, have three children: Jim, Greg and Andrea, and are actively engaged with the Ashland community, having embraced enthusiastically "the Center of the Universe" as their home.