Lakeland Community College mourns the death of its former president, Dr. Ralph R. Doty, who served as the college's 4th president from 1988 to 2001. Doty passed away June 13, 2020, at age 78, in Duluth, MN.
"Dr. Doty made a lasting impact on Lakeland and our community," said Lakeland President Morris W. Beverage Jr. "He was a tireless worker in support of the students of Lakeland, as well as the community at large. He served for 13 years and his work is still felt in the halls of Lakeland."
Under Doty's leadership, the campus grew significantly in the number of students served, programs offered, funds raised, and facilities improved.
During his tenure, the college received North Central Accreditation in 1990, established pioneering transfer agreements with four-year colleges and universities including The Ohio State University in 1994, and converted from quarters to semesters in 2000.
Doty grew the campus by championing construction of the Student Center in 1993 and Health Technologies Building in 1995, and renovation of the Library in 1997 and Athletic & Fitness Center in 2000.
Doty and his wife Diane were the driving force to undergo an extensive $3 million restoration of the historic Mooreland Mansion on campus in 1998, to serve as an elegant conference center and reception site. The President's Living Room at Mooreland was named after them and features their portrait in one corner.
Doty led the college to its first successful countywide ballot issue in 25 years in 1992 and started the Citizens for Lakeland Golf Outing that same year.
Among many other accomplishments, Doty created Lakeland's Center for Business & Industry in 1989, oversaw celebration of the college's 25th anniversary in 1992, opened Lakeland East in Madison in 1994 and Lakeland West in Willowick in 1997, and helped start the All-Ohio Academic Team program in 1997.
He was named Leader of the Year by Leadership Lake County in 1994.
Doty retired from Lakeland in 2001 and was recognized with a Lifetime Achievement Award by Phi Theta Kappa International for his higher education leadership.
A celebration of Doty's life will be held when his children can travel safely to Minnesota.