Foxcroft Academy graduate chosen as Husson’s new president
Husson University’s next president will be the first woman to lead the private institution in its 125-year history.
The board of trustees unanimously chose Lynne Coy-Ogan to lead Husson. She joined the university as the School of Education’s dean in 2005 and spent the past 15 years as senior vice president for academic affairs and provost. Coy-Ogan is a 1983 graduate of Foxcroft Academy and was inducted into the school’s Academic Hall of Fame in 2013.
Coy-Ogan will bring a varied background in education to her presidency, and she is prepared to rise to the challenges that universities face, like staying relevant as college enrollment rates decline, she said. She will fill a position left open when Robert Clark announced his retirement in October of last year. He was the longest-serving president of four-year colleges and universities in Maine.
Coy-Ogan, who said it was a “tremendous honor” to be Husson’s first female president, will step into her new role July 1.
“Much of my career has been dedicated to being a role model, especially for young girls,” she said, noting her work as a mentor in Maine’s Olympia Snowe Women’s Leadership Institute. “I may be the first, but I know I’ll be one of many.”
Developing a new strategic plan that positions Husson to address challenges of the future is a top goal for Coy-Ogan, she said. That includes attracting new students and expanding educational offerings, which is already underway.
This spring, Husson will launch five new online degree programs, which were chosen based on market demands, she said. They include bachelor’s degrees in applied health sciences, nutrition and health, and health and fitness. There will also be master’s degrees in applied psychology and applied animal behavior and welfare.
“Each of these opportunities trends well for future market employment,” she said. “Our desire is to always have our portfolio ready for students to advance their careers.”
People should look to Husson not only for its degree programs, but also for certificates, getting recertified and other programs if they decide to advance their careers, Coy-Ogan said. It’s about “serving students for the lifelong learning process,” she said.
Coy-Ogan was born in Bangor and grew up in Dover-Foxcroft. She holds a bachelor’s degree in elementary and special education from Boston University, a master’s degree in school counseling from John Hopkins University and a doctorate in educational leadership from Liberty University.
Before coming to Husson, Coy-Ogan worked as a principal at the Bangor School Department and what is now Regional School Unit 68 of Dover-Foxcroft. In 2002, she was named Maine’s Distinguished Principal.
Previously, she lived in Maryland, where she taught first and second grade and was an elementary school principal.
A committee including Husson trustees, faculty, staff and a student representative began its search for a new president internally because it had confidence in the university’s leaders, said Daniel Hutchins III, board of trustees chairperson.
As provost, Coy-Ogan has been instrumental in leading the development of Husson’s academic programs and making sure they meet the needs of the workforce, he said.
Husson made great strides under Clark’s leadership, including expanding its Bangor campus and introducing new online programs, Hutchins said. High-quality programming and geographic reach will continue to transform students’ lives under Coy-Ogan’s leadership, he said.
Coy-Ogan has dedicated her career to serving students well and building opportunities for them. She plans to bring that same passion to her role as a university president, she said.
“New opportunities like artificial intelligence are changing the landscape, and Husson has long been known for experiential learning,” she said. “As we begin to prepare for careers that can’t yet be envisioned, a commitment to excellence and experiential opportunities will continue to move Husson forward.”