“Where there is no vision, the people perish.” Proverbs 29:18
In August of 2017, Timothy Quinnan assumed office as President of Richmont Graduate University. Previously, he served in senior leadership roles at a number of prestigious universities including the University of Texas at Arlington, San Diego State University, Florida State University, and the University of Cincinnati. At each, he made significant and enduring contributions to assure excellence. His passion for and practicing of transformational leadership remains strong even after more than two decades in the field of higher education.
With a talent for creating visions which inspire others, expertise in strategic-planning, personal involvement in fund-raising and resource generation, fostering pathways to student achievement, building communities of diversity and inclusion, or anticipating future trends and repositioning his institution to meet them, Dr. Quinnan is well-prepared for the challenges of the chief executive officer’s suite.
He earned a bachelor of arts degree in English Literature from Miami University in Oxford, Ohio. He followed it with a master’s degree in College Student Personnel, also from Miami. After doing a pre-doctoral fellowship at the University of Michigan, he completed his Doctor of Philosophy in Higher Education Administration at The Union Institute & University in Cincinnati, Ohio. Dr. Quinnan’s dissertation was published by Greenwood Press as Adult Students ‘At-Risk’: Culture Bias in Higher Education (1997) and became a widely-used textbook. His academic training paved the way to an impactful career in student affairs. From those years, he developed a deep belief that the needs of students should always be the most important variable in university decision-making.
As an administrator who believes in the value of scholarship, Dr. Quinnan demonstrated this by publishing two books: Generations Lost: Popular Culture and Youth in Crisis (2002), and Adult Students at Risk (1997). Additionally, he has published a host of articles in peer-reviewed professional journals, including Academic Leadership, The Journal of College and Character, and The Chronicle of Higher Education. He has been invited to write opinion editorials in various metropolitan newspapers. With the rise of visual communication modalities, Dr. Quinnan shifted his creative endeavors to video platforms that speak directly to millennial audiences. He oversaw the creation of a robust YouTube channel of student-success videos at the University of Texas at Arlington. Among his proudest achievements are the two independent films that he scripted: The Stranger (2014) and To Die and Live Again (2013). Each of these dramatized the search for spiritual meaning among college students, a lifelong theme in his research.
Other significant milestones in Dr. Quinnan’s career included serving as Director of the renowned Institute for College Student Values in 2004-05, hosted by Florida State University. He founded an acclaimed Leadership Summit symposium at San Diego State University in 2009 which remains a major leadership gathering in southern California. He established a Next Generation Initiatives program to provide seed grants to pilot experimental models for student engagement, debuted a cutting-edge Expressions in Leadership conference, and led the opening of a new career center, all at UT-Arlington.
Wherever Dr. Quinnan has served, he has made building communities of difference a campus priority. At Richmont, he continued this commitment and inspired several transformative events in school history. In 2019, he published the institution’s inaugural Statement on Diversity following soul-searching conversations with students, faculty, staff, and Trustees. Another milestone was his establishment of an Office of Diversity & Inclusion, hiring of a director, and permanently funding its operation. In early 2020, before the national unrest over racial justice which began that spring, he created a President’s Diversity Advisory Council to focus on concerns related to diversity and develop proactive strategies to address them. During his tenure, both the diversity of the student body as well as that of faculty and staff has increased exponentially. Working with his executive team, Dr. Quinnan also elevated it—Engage New and Diverse Populations—to one of Five Core Aspirations of Richmont’s formal strategic plan.
Attuned to the importance of resource development, Dr. Quinnan is a highly effective fundraiser. Since arriving at Richmont, he has increased by tenfold the amount of annual support received. In 2021, he secured a four-year, $1.9 million grant from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Health Resources and Services Administration to support clinical counseling expansion to underserved communities. Cultivating relationships with prominent private foundations has also been successful as Richmont can count grants from The Maclellan Foundation, Kaiser Permanente, John and Polly Sparks Foundation, One Hundred Shares, the Fitzgerald Foundation, and the National Christian Trust. Earlier, he negotiated gifts of more than $2.1 million at San Diego State University to support student life activities, including a center for leadership and service. Over the course of his career, he has raised millions of dollars for his universities. Beyond development, Dr. Quinnan pursues public-private partnerships, corporate philanthropy, and enrollment growth to further enhance the institution’s financial base.
Dr. Quinnan is a sought-after speaker and is often invited to serve as keynote speaker at various leadership conferences around the nation. He is a consultant to numerous businesses, educational institutions, and non-profit agencies. His dynamic and interactive workshops on values-driven lifestyle choices, personal mission, and Spirituality Seminar, continue to be in demand by students as well as colleagues. Dr. Quinnan views his entire career as an unwavering commitment to helping others reach their innate potential. He finds affirmation of his impact in the accomplishments of those he once mentored—today’s entrepreneurs, teachers, elected officials, physicians, ministers, even television personalities—who choose to keep in contact with him.
In his personal life, Dr. Quinnan treasures spending time with his extraordinary wife and college-age daughter. He enjoys fitness activities, philanthropic work, and international travel. However modestly, he strives to make the world a little better one act of kindness at a time.