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John R. Herrick
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John Russell Herrick was born in Milton, Vermont in 1822. He became president in August 1885 at the age of 63. He was a graduate of the University of Vermont (1847) and Andover Theological Seminary. Herrick was also an ordained minister of the Congregational Church. He taught theology for several years, and in 1880, became president of Pacific University at Forest Grove, Oregon. Herrick was the first University of Dakota president with an administrative background, and he emphasized the raising of academic standards. However, by 1887, the terms for the first Board of Directors had ended and a new governor, Louis K. Church, had been elected into office. Darwin Inman, the president of the executive committee, was a Vermillion native. Inman believed that the current president and faculty were not aggressively promoting or serving the needs of the university. Herrick’s affiliation with the Congregationalist Church also raised concerns within the community. With Inman’s influence on the governing board, Herrick was succeeded by Professor Edward Olson. Dr. Herrick moved to Illinois to be closer to his children while continuing to lecture, write, and preach. He died on July 26, 1912.
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