President Milton A. Gordon speaking at the Tribute Gala celebrating his 21 years as PresidentCaption: President Milton. A. Gordon addresses the audience at the tribute gala celebrating his 21 years as president of Cal State Fullerton. Photo: Karen Tapia. Download hi-res photo.

President Gordon: Decision to Retire 'Was Difficult'

A Profound Sense of Pride and Appreciation

Serving this university since 1990 has been an honor and a privilege

Thank you, Lucy. Tonight’s event has been humbling, and to all of you I say  “Thank you” – an expression that does not come close to the gratitude I feel for your kindness and good wishes. I especially want to thank Gala Chairs Wylie & Bette Aitken and Rudy & Catherine Hanley.

I also want to express my appreciation for your support of the Fund for Faculty Research and Creativity. This work and its value can sometimes be overlooked amidst all of our other urgent needs, but the degree to which the professional development of our professors and advancement of critical research projects can strengthen teaching and learning, enhance the vibrancy of academic life at the university, and help solve major challenges facing society is immeasurable.

My decision to retire was a difficult one, but I am comforted by a profound sense of pride and appreciation. I’ve been able to call higher education my professional home the past five decades, and serving California State University, Fullerton since 1990 has been an honor and a privilege. I love this institution, and I know a bright future lies ahead.

It has meant so much to me to be a part of this time in the life of the university. Since I became your president, the university has risen to national prominence. Tonight we’ve reflected on many of our achievements together, which are too numerous to recount again now.

But I really want to stress that word “together.”  Indeed, where we find ourselves today is not so much about “me” as it is about “we.” As I look out over this audience, I see friends, supporters and colleagues — again, too many people to mention by name — who can share responsibility for all the great things we’ve done.

But there is one particular person I very much want to recognize. My wife, Margaret, has been with me every step of the way. An academician and administrator in her own right, she has been my chief advisor, biggest fan and best friend. My love for her is beyond description, and we all owe her tremendous thanks, too, for her essential role in the betterment of this university.

So, again, thank you for the confidence you have placed in me and for being the source of so much professional and personal joy. I offer the entire Titan family my best wishes for what is surely a very promising future for this great institution.

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