Luther College hosts farewell tribute to Torgersons May 16

'14 Years of Mojo from the Get-go!'

Luther College will hold a special program titled "14 Years of Mojo from the Get-go!" in honor of President Rick and Mrs. Judy Torgerson on Thursday, May 16. The main program will be held at 8 p.m. in the Main Hall of the Center for Faith and Life, followed by a reception at 9 p.m. in Bentdahl Commons. In the event of rain, the reception will be held in the lobby of the Dahl Centennial Union.

This event is open to the public with no charge for admission. However, those who plan on attending are asked to RSVP by Friday, May 10, at:

The program is a farewell celebration honoring the Torgersons' 14 years of dedicated service to Luther. It will include comments from various constituencies of the college as well as several student performances.

In addition, a video tribute that has been viewed throughout the country at recent alumni gatherings attended by the Torgersons will be featured during the program.

The reception will feature Luther graduates Jon Ailabouni, Luther class of 2010, and Steven Uhl, Luther class of 2013, in a jazz combo.

Originally from Saskatoon, Saskatchewan, Canada, Rick Torgerson began his collegiate career by studying natural sciences. He earned a bachelor's degree in biology and physical education at Concordia College in Moorhead, Minn., followed by a master's and doctoral degree in entomology from Washington State University in Pullman, Wash. He also completed the college management program at Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh.

Torgerson has served in faculty and administrative positions at six liberal arts colleges. His previous positions include assistant professor of biology and vice president for development at Wartburg College, assistant dean for academic affairs at Texas Lutheran College and vice president for academic affairs, dean at Baker University and vice president for development at Gustavus Adolphus College. He became the ninth president of Luther College in 1999.

Since Torgerson's arrival on campus, Luther has seen improvement in a number of areas. His energetic leadership style has resulted in stable enrollments, a near tripling of the college's endowment and successful fundraising initiatives totaling more than $200 million. The college has received national awards for its accomplishments in sustainability, such as the recent additions of the wind turbine and the solar array.

Several major renovations have been made on campus during Torgerson's presidency, including the addition of the Noble Recital Hall to the Jenson-Noble Hall of Music and the construction of Sampson Hoffland Laboratories and a new Center for the Arts.

Torgerson is the recipient of numerous honors and awards, including an outstanding faculty award at Texas Lutheran, the Council of Independent Colleges Academic Deans Award, a Distinguished Service Award from Concordia College and the Royal Norwegian Order of Merit.

President Richard Torgerson