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Mooney looks to future as 11th SMC president

Natalie Bailey | Wednesday, January 14, 2004

Some at Saint Mary’s are impressed by her previous leadership positions, others appreciate that she is a woman and others love that she is an alumna. Whatever the reason, most faculty and students support the Board of Trustees’ selection of Carol Mooney as the eleventh president of Saint Mary’s.

“I know Carol Mooney and am thrilled that she was selected,” current president Marilou Eldred said. “She is an excellent leader and will position the college well for continued success.”

Students were invited to take part of the selection process by attending student forum sessions planned for each candidate’s visit. In addition, students had the opportunity to make their comments and concerns known by filling out a questionnaire on each candidate.

Shay Jolly, residence hall association president, attended all four forums and felt Mooney was first in line for the position.

“Out of all the student forums I felt like [Mooney] interacted with the students the best by forming a personal relationship with the students from the beginning,” Jolly said.

The student forums enabled the Board of Trustees to consider what members of the Saint Mary’s community wanted in their next president.

“The first priority for students was that we have a woman as president. The second was that she have a vision for the education of women,” student body president Elizabeth Jablonski-Diehl said. “The students felt that Carol Mooney embodied these qualities.”

The possession of strong leadership skills and Saint Mary’s values worked well for Mooney and being an alumna also helped.

“I think she has a very good idea of what the school is about and what we need. She is not coming into this as an outsider, but already established in the university setting and in the Saint Mary’s community,” alumnae commissioner Anna Bauer said.

In alliance with the majority of the student body, Jablonski-Diehl endorsed Mooney as a positive next step for Saint Mary’s.

“Mooney is smart, energetic and a visionary. But with all of that, her biggest strength is her commitment to Saint Mary’s. It is a commitment that started years ago. She was a student here. She was an active alumna. She was always a leader,” Jablonski-Diehl said.

Students and faculty are excited to see where this new woman will lead Saint Mary’s and what she has in store for her term as president.

“I feel she will be a strong leader. I have only heard praises about her and I trust she will put her best foot forward,” senior Daniela Urs said. “I see Saint Mary’s becoming a stronger school, attracting more top-tier women and extending its influence into the next generation.”

Even with the support of the school behind her, Mooney faces a road of challenges ahead.

“Mooney’s biggest challenge will be the same as all incoming presidents. It is difficult replacing a highly effective, much-loved president. I think that Mooney will excel in the position but it will be tough following Eldred,” Jablonski-Diehl said.