UVF President Don Meyer Announces Retirement

by Office of Marketing | Apr 11, 2016
Meyer Retirement Slide - homepage
Meyer Retirement

After leading the college for over 19 years, President Meyer and his wife Evie have announced their retirement. Dr. Meyer's original written announcement regarding a retirement date effective July 1, 2017, to the Board of Trustees on Wednesday, April 6, became an announcement on Thursday, April 7, to faculty and staff and then to students on Friday, April 8, that Dr. Meyer and Evie will be retiring effective July 1, 2016. The reason for the one year earlier date for their retirement came after the Board voted unanimously on a resolution to grant both Dr. Meyer and Evie a one year sabbatical, with full pay and benefits, as an expression of love and appreciation from the Board of Trustees for their dedicated years of service to the University of Valley Forge.

Don and Evie Meyer
We can't thank the Meyers enough for all they have done to advance the mission of the university: To prepare individuals for a life of service and leadership in the church and in the world.

We feel the best way to update you with this exciting news is to share with you the communique that President Meyer prepared for his Facebook page provided in the message that follows below.

Please join us in congratulating Dr. and Mrs. Don Meyer.

From Dr. Meyer's Facebook page as originally published on April 9, 2016:

Over the years, I have shared many things with my Facebook friends – this one is personal from Evie and me. We wanted you to hear it from us first because that what friends do.  ☺  I am going to share with you here the first paragraphs and the last paragraphs of a letter that I shared with our UVF Board of Trustees on Wednesday, April 6, regarding our retirement effective July 1, 2017. However, something happened in that Board meeting that took Evie and me by total surprise that will affect our lives in a huge way. Please read through this letter and at the end I have added an “addendum” (so to speak) to tell what happened in the Board meeting which is “the rest of the story of our retirement.” Evie and I are at great peace and feel that we are following the will of God for us personally and for the University of Valley Forge – which we love and will always love! Please pray with all of us as the Presidential Search Committee begins the important task of finding God’s man or woman to be the next President of this great University to continue to “prepare individuals for a life of service and leadership in the church and in the world.”

January 29, 2016

Dear Chairman Colletti and Board of Trustee friends, 

Warmest greetings from the beautiful campus of the University of Valley Forge!  

That is how I began my very first letter (except it was Valley Forge Christian College) when I began to serve, with gratitude and a deep sense of God’s call, as President on January 1, 1997. I have never lost or waivered from serving with gratitude or sensing always the deep awareness of God’s call to lead this wonderful University with its very clear mission to “prepare individuals for a life of service and leadership in the church and in the world.”

At the top of my personal mission statement I have always had the words from Joshua 22:3 which Joshua shared with Reuben, Gad, and the half tribe of Manasseh, “You have carried out the mission the Lord your God gave you.” Evie and I have always had as our prayer, from the very beginning of our ministry together, that God would help us to faithfully carry out the mission He had called us to. And we also prayed from the time we arrived on this campus that God would make it abundantly clear to us when the time had come for our part in the mission of the University of Valley Forge to come to a close. Therefore, with deep love and affection for the University of Valley Forge and its wonderful Board, administration, faculty, staff and students, we respectfully submit our retirement effective July 1, 2017.

I would like to give a short explanation of our faith journey that led us to this particular time to announce our retirement. We began to seriously pray about this as we were getting closer to “retirement” age. We originally felt that July 1, 2013 would be a good time for us to retire, praying that God would either intervene or lead us step by step to an announcement of our plans in the April 2012 Board of Trustee meeting. However, ... (The letter continues to Chairman Colletti and the Board explaining that what we thought might be our retirement date changed three times due to circumstances which arose at the University which Evie and I definitely interpreted as the intervention of God because we felt that our retirement during these circumstances would not have been good for the University. The letter concludes with these paragraphs.)

We are amazed and humbled as we look back at the incredible faithfulness of God throughout these years. He brought just the right people and just the right resources and just the right opportunities at just the right time. “Great is Thy Faithfulness” has been our anchor and our theme song at many significant and historic moments when we have celebrated the things that He has helped us to accomplish.  

The information on the enclosed chart (a sort of “state of the university”) is a testimony that confirms to Evie and me that in His time (almost two decades), God did indeed have a mission for us to do and He has been with our University every step of the way. In the past 19+ years UVF has experienced an incredible metamorphosis and we acknowledge the faithfulness of God.  

We will serve with a continued commitment to do everything possible to advance the University of Valley Forge and to do everything we can to help with a smooth transition until we leave on July 1, 2017. To quote a dear friend of ours and our University, Dr. H. Robert Rhoden, we believe that for the University of Valley Forge, “the future is as bright as the promises of God”. We will leave feeling the way Cyril Homer felt when he said to his wife as they were driving out of town after serving as President at Southeastern University, “We didn’t do all that needs to be done (there are challenges ahead and much more to do), but we did everything we could.” And we thank you from the bottom of our hearts for this incredible opportunity to serve!

Sincerely with affection,

Meyer Signature
Don Meyer, Ph.D.

Enclosure (see below)


“Great is Thy Faithfulness”

UVF Facilities Improvements/Academic Growth from FY 1997-98 thru FY 2014-15

Facilities Improvements from 1997 through 2015
Demolition of 27 old buildings ($2M)
New parking lots built and roads and parking areas resurfaced
New facility: Storms Research Center ($3.5M)
New facility: Renaissance Academy new building & renovated building ($7M) + (Rent $4.65M)
New facility: Bongiorno Hall ($4.2M)
New facility: Cardone Hall ($5.4M)
Old facility remodeled and expanded: Flower Chapel
Old facility remodeled: Solomon’s Porch
Old facility remodeled: Krempels Theater
Old facility remodeled: Tucker Hall
Old facility remodeled: Harrup Administration Building
Old facility remodeled: Mason Chapel
Old facility remodeled and expanded: Dining Commons
Old facilities remodeled: Virtually all Residence Halls
Old facility remodeled: Gymnasium
Old facilities improvements: New windows and decentralized HVAC in all old current buildings
Other Changes 1997 2015
Campus Acreage 84 105
Student Body 476 (fall) 952 (fall)
Full-Time Faculty 17 33
Undergraduate Programs 7 Over 50
Master’s Degrees 0 8
Board of Trustee Members 34 50

UVF financial growth from FY 1997-98 through FY 2014-15

Unrestricted Fund
(includes Annual Fund & Conference Center)
From Fiscal Year 1997-1998
Fiscal Year 2014-2015
Raised $23,578,969
Restricted Fund
(includes Capital Fund)
From Fiscal Year 1997-1998
Fiscal Year 2014-2015
Raised $7,601,109
Net Value
(Property Value minus debt)
Fiscal Year 1997-1998
$3,100,000 Net Value
Fiscal Year 2014-2015
$33,440,297 Net Value

UVF Additional Improvements from 1997 to 2016

  • Accreditation granted by Middle States Commission on Higher Education (highest accreditation possible for a University)
  • Branch campus established in Woodbridge, VA
  • Extension sites established and continuing to be established
  • University of Valley Forge status granted in September 2014
  • Major upgrades and growth of Information Technology
  • Connect2 Technology Program launched which provides, among other things, a new laptop computer to all incoming students
  • Major utility infrastructure upgrades of all buildings (electrical, heating, ventilation, and air conditioning) 
  • Campus signage and lighting expanded and upgraded
  • Board of Trustee composition, structure, and responsibility studied and redesigned
  • Administrative systems and organizational systems growth in response to institutional change and growth
  • Significant Systems partnership in 2015 to launch aggressive online programs
  • NCAA Division III membership to be granted in 2016
  • Degree in Social Work certified by the Council on Social Work Education enabling graduates to earn a Master’s Degree in Social Work in one year instead of two years
  • Degrees in Education (Early Childhood, Middle School, Secondary, and Music) certified by the Pennsylvania Department of Education enabling graduates to teach in public or private schools

UVF Projects on the Horizon for 2016 - 2017

  • $400,000 gift given in 2016 to remodel our current gymnasium to be completed in 2016
  • $250,000 matching gift to be given in 2016 ($125,000 to be raised) for a total of $375,000 to expand and remodel the Anvil Student Center to be completed Summer 2016
  • Pending rental of Capeci Hall (formerly Renaissance Academy new building built)
  • Portions of renovated Renaissance Academy Building 70 currently being rented 
  • Wonderful “surprises” that God has not yet even made us aware of


That was supposed to be the end of my explanation of the story of our retirement. However, in the Board meeting the next day, Thursday, April 7, the Board passed a resolution and then called me back into the Board meeting to inform me of its content. While the Board was grateful that for the sake of the good of the University, Evie and I had deferred our retirement three times, which we had originally planned for July 2013, they felt that they did not want us to have to wait another year to retire. They wanted to do something nice for us!

Therefore, the resolution states that in order to bless Evie and me for our nearly 20 years of ministry at UVF, the Board is naming me President Emeritus and granting both Evie and me a one year full sabbatical (with full pay and benefits) effective July 1, 2016, through June 30, 2017. As a result, I will officially end my role as President of UVF one year earlier on July 1, 2016, instead of July 1, 2017. The Board affirmed in a most gracious way by a unanimous vote that this was their gesture of appreciation for my service as President and also since I had never had or taken a sabbatical during all of my years as President. My status as President Emeritus will end on July 1, 2017.

They told me that a farewell celebration for Evie and me will be held at UVF sometime later, perhaps this fall 2016.

The Board will name an interim President very shortly to begin serving on July 1, 2016, (when my Presidency ends) while the UVF Presidential Search Committee begins their responsibilities to find the next man or woman of God to serve as President to lead this precious University.

And that is the “rest of the story.” While it came as a total shock (this gift is just over 48 hours old to us) and an amazing gift from the Board and blessing of God, we are still processing all that this will mean for us and we are extremely excited and happy!

Please join Evie and me in praying that God will bring just the right person at just the right time with just the right heart and abilities to lead the University of Valley Forge to be just exactly what God wants and needs it to be to reach to the Northeast and beyond to educate and prepare leaders to positively affect our world at home and abroad.

God bless you!