After six years as president of Crowder College, Dr. Alan Marble will retire from his position next month, the school announced Monday.

Marble, who has been with the college a total of 27 years, will leave at the end of the academic year, June 30.
Marble said his decision to retire is based on other job opportunities, as well as the public school retirement system.

“The public school retirement system is a very nice system, but there's a point where you need to get out and I'm at that point,” Marble said. “There's more than one thing that I'm involved in. I've got some business interests that I'll be working on and also another career opportunity that I'm very excited about.”

Marble said he expects an announcement on his new pursuits to come in the future, though he could not name specifics just yet.

Marble began his work with the college in 1986, as the school's director of adult continuing education, a title he held for one year. For the next 10 years, he worked as the community college's director, and then dean, of development and business relations, before serving five years as the Dean of Business and Support Services.

In 2006, Marble was named interim president, and was given the title of president the following year.

He also worked with fundraising in his time at Crowder, and prior to holding any faculty position, had attended the college as a student.

“I'll miss being here,” Marble said. “It's been half my life roughly, so it's been a big piece of me, a huge part of my family. We've grown up in the Crowder family. It's just been a great privilege and a terrific honor to be associated with such great people all these years.”

Marble's retirement is on the agenda for Tuesday morning's meeting of the Crowder College Board of Trustees.

He said he expects the board to have an announcement “soon” on how his position will be filled after his departure next month.

No matter what the board's decision is in replacing Marble, he said he feels confident it will be a smooth transition because of the faculty and staff Crowder College has.

“We have the strongest lineup of people in my 27 years here,” Marble said. “The faculty and staff are top-notch. The senior leadership is the best I've ever worked with. On all cylinders it's a great place, people are doing just great things, it doesn't have a lot to do with me, it has a lot to do with those folks, they're great people. I think they won't miss a beat.”

With Marble as president, the college has seen enrollment nearly double, with the most recent enrollment numbers at 4,976, and a total of 568 students applying for graduation this spring semester.

The college has also completed several building projects on Marble's watch, including the Neosho campus' Arnold Farber building, Tatum Bell Tower, Davidson Hall, and MARET Center. Construction is also underway at the McDonald County campus, in Jane, and the groundbreaking for an expansion at the Webb City campus is planned for the near future.

The college has also reached cooperative agreements to offer bachelor's degree completion programs with Missouri Southern State University and Missouri State University, as well as offering dual credit programs in nine area counties.

Despite the college's growing list of achievements, Marble prefers not to take the credit.

“I really don't consider anything to be my achievement,” Marble said. “Things that have happened here have happened because of a lot of great people doing a lot of great work.”

He said of the college's accomplishments in the time he has been there, it is the teamwork of the Crowder faculty and staff that stands out to him.

“I think we've all learned that we can do a whole lot more together than we can as individuals,” Marble said. “If you don't care who gets the credit, a lot of great things can get done and that's what's happened here.”

Andy Wood, President of Crowder's Board of Trustees, said in a Monday news release that Marble has been “outstanding” in his time as Crowder's leader.

“He provided us fantastic leadership during a time when Crowder was experiencing unprecedented growth,” Wood said. “The Crowder board hates to see Alan leave the Crowder family, but we wish him the best of luck, and look forward to working with him on his future endeavors.”