Goldey-Beacom College community mourns former President Baldt

Delaware News Desk
The Community News

The board of trustees and the greater Goldey-Beacom College community was saddened May 6 by the death of former College President William R. Baldt.

He served GBC from 1975 to 1996 as its 11th president. In addition to an honorary doctorate conferred by the college in 1986, Baldt also received a Bachelor of Arts degree in history and a Master’s degree in counseling education from the University of Delaware. He was a graduate of P.S. duPont High School in Wilmington.

“Dr. Baldt was a charismatic leader who understood the importance of balancing the academic and social experience in higher education,” said Mark R. Olazagasti, chairman of the board of trustees, Goldey-Beacom College. “He was approachable, engaging and an intentional leader who promoted mutual respect among students, faculty and staff. Respected throughout the community, Dr. Baldt was an inspiration and role model to many.”

“President Baldt was a key player in the history of GBC,” said Dr. Colleen Perry Keith, president, Goldey-Beacom College. “In 1976, he presided over the college’s first-ever accreditation from the Middle States Association of Colleges and Secondary Schools — now the Middle States Commission on Higher Education. When Dr. Baldt took over as president in 1975, he brought a confidence, optimism and respect for the college’s then 92-year history, and his work made it possible for the GBC we now have 43 years later: one that offers the full gamut of fully-accredited, post-secondary degrees built upon a firm educational and financial foundation.”

“Bill's extraordinary impact on GBC can be seen in so many ways — ways that will be even more evident as the years go by,” said Gary L. Wirt, immediate past president, Goldey-Beacom College. “He was responsible for crafting and advancing a new image for the college — not as a place for training, but for a true baccalaureate education. He promoted the college in his every move, achieving accreditation, choosing prestigious trustees, creating important alliances in the community and articulating the unique nature of the institution. Most important, he was an advocate and champion for students — always genuinely interested in them as individuals and celebrating their growth during their years at GBC. He truly understood that learning was not confined to the classroom, and he expanded the role of extracurricular activities, promoted study-abroad and enabled a rich social life on campus.”

“President Baldt was the right person at the right time to bring about necessary change for a bright future for the college,” said Mohammad Ilyas, past president, Goldey-Beacom College

For more on Goldey-Beacom College, visit gbc.edu.