John P. Marsden, Ph.D. became the tenth president of Midway University on February 1, 2013. A transformational leader, he collaboratively managed a turnaround of Midway University through expansion of athletics and academic programs, coeducation, international partnerships, and financial stewardship. Midway University has had six years of enrollment growth, balanced operating budgets, and five consecutive years of recognition as a NAIA Champions of Character Five-Star Institution at the Gold Level.
He has successfully spearheaded several major construction and renovation projects across campus, completing them all without incurring new debt. These include the new Hunter Field House, the new Tracy Farmer-Don Ball Stadium, the top to bottom renovation of Pinkerton Hall converting it back to a residence hall, bathroom renovations in Belle Wisdom Residence Hall and Buster Residence Hall, the rebuilding of the tennis courts, and the renovation of Marrs Hall which includes the new Ann J. Bowling Welcome Center.
Dr. Marsden’s success was recognized in 2018 by Bluegrass Tomorrow, an organization focused on quality of life in the 18-county Bluegrass Region, when he received the Excellence in Education Vision Award for his work at Midway University. He currently serves on the Board of Directors for the Washington, DC-based Council of Independent Colleges (CIC), on the Executive Committee and as Vice Chair for the Association of Independent Kentucky Colleges and Universities (AIKCU), and as a member of the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC) Board of Trustees.
Dr. Marsden’s career in higher education includes teaching a range of courses from the undergraduate level to the doctoral level; administration as a provost and head of university strategic planning; and authorship or co-authorship of four books in the areas of assisted living and dementia care settings as well as many book chapters, articles, and presentations. A first-generation American, he was raised on Long Island, NY. He earned a B.Arch. with a minor in Industrial Management from Carnegie Mellon University, a M.Arch. and Graduate Certificate in Gerontology from the University of Arizona, and a Ph.D. and M.S. from the University of Michigan. Dr. Marsden and Mrs. Margaret Marsden, a graduate of Auburn University School of Pharmacy, have one son, Will.