Ursinus Remembers President Bobby Fong

Updated information following the death of President. Bobby Fong will be posted here as it becomes available.

Students, alumni, faculty and staff, and friends are invited to share their remembrances and condolences.

See additional details about the memorial service on Saturday, Sept. 20.

Update Wednesday, Sept. 10 at 5:30 p.m.

Information about the memorial service was sent to all members of the Ursinus community.

As many of you are aware, Ursinus College suffered the tragic loss of our beloved president, Dr. Bobby Fong, early Monday when he passed away unexpectedly. Bobby was an impassioned leader, who exuded a deep love for the College, and its mission of changing lives through liberal arts education. He was a visionary for the transformative power of higher education, and during the time he served as president, his strategic plan for Ursinus had a profound effect on the campus community. Above all, Bobby will be remembered as a wonderfully down-to-earth, accessible, and compassionate person, who always had the faculty, staff, and students of Ursinus College at heart.

Ursinus is a remarkably tight-knit community—one that shares equally in each other’s greatest triumphs and most profound losses. The College invites you to join us as we come together for a public memorial service to honor Dr. Bobby Fong on Saturday, September 20, 2014 on campus in Bomberger Hall. The program will begin at 11:00 a.m. Overflow seating will be available in Olin Auditorium.

We are in a time of mourning and careful reflection. The Ursinus campus community is like no other, and during this difficult time, may we turn to each other for comfort and support. Let us also all keep Suzanne and Bobby’s sons, Jonathan and Nicholas (“Colin”), in our thoughts as we mourn as a community.

As we begin to conceptualize Bobby’s tremendous legacy at Ursinus, we contemplate how best to carry on and continue what he brought to the College. For those interested in making a memorial contribution, the Fong family has requested that gifts be made in support of the planned Innovation and Discovery Center, which was one of Bobby’s highest priorities for his presidency. Contributions can be mailed to Ursinus College; Attn: Advancement Office; 601 E. Main Street; Collegeville, PA 19426, with checks made payable to “Ursinus College” and noting tribute to Bobby. You may also make a memorial gift online at www.ursinus.edu/makegift.

Update Wednesday, Sept. 10 at 10:30 a.m.

Chairman of the Board Alan Novak sent this message to students, faculty and staff:

Our community has suffered an unexpected and tragic loss in the death of our President, Bobby Fong. His guidance toward our mission will be greatly missed. We are committed to our leadership vision and strategic plan and will continue to strive toward it.

As an academic institution, it is essential that the chief academic officer serve in the primary leadership role in the absence of the president. The Board of Trustees formalized this practice at its May meeting by its promotion of our current Dean of the College to the position of Executive Vice President of Academic Affairs and affirming that this has the authority of the President when necessary.

Accordingly, as the Chairman of the Board of Trustees of Ursinus College I support Dr. Lucien “Terry” Winegar as the current administrative leader of our College. I have confidence that he will work effectively with other members of our senior leadership and all of you as we honor the vision of President Bobby Fong and work towards its realization.

As Bobby would say: Go Bears!

Alan Novak, Chairman

Posted Monday, Sept. 8 at 11 a.m.

Dr. Bobby Fong, President of Ursinus College since July 1, 2011, passed away Sept. 8 due to natural causes.

bfongFor the past three years, Bobby has been a thoughtful leader of our Ursinus community. He cared deeply for our students and was honored to have led an institution that encouraged them to live purposefully. This was always the greatest source of pride for Bobby, and he spoke eloquently of how Ursinus embraced the process of learning.

He was inspiring, passionate about Ursinus and very proud of our faculty, students and staff. He had a long and distinguished career that included two presidencies, a role as chief academic officer, a deanship and a well-earned reputation for his scholarship.

The college remains committed to the leadership and vision that Bobby brought to Collegeville. Our community can best honor his memory by striving to carry forward his vision for Ursinus.

Students, alumni, faculty and staff, and friends are invited to share their remembrances and condolences.