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Mount Plans Grand Procession to Inaugurate 12th President

March 2, 2012 -- Mount Saint Mary’s University celebrates the inauguration of its 12th President, Ann McElaney-Johnson, at 10 a.m. on March 16 on the College's downtown Doheny Campus, 10 Chester Place, Los Angeles. McElaney-Johnson was selected in February 2011 after an extensive nationwide search, and assumed leadership of the College on July 1, 2011.

Photo op: A grand inaugural procession with 300 to 400 community members will include Los Angeles Archdiocese Archbishop José H. Gomez, Second District Los Angeles County Supervisor Mark Ridley-Thomas, Ninth District City Councilwoman Jan Perry, College regents, Mount faculty and administrators and college and university delegates. The procession will exit the gates of Mount Saint Mary’s University at 9:50 a.m. from historic Chester Place onto Adams Boulevard. The assembly will proceed to St. Vincent's Church for the inauguration ceremony at 621 W. Adams Blvd., Los Angeles 90007.

Guests not in the procession are invited to be seated in the church beginning at 9:15 a.m., and are asked to be in their seats no later than 10 a.m.

McElaney-Johnson brings 24 years of service to small, residential liberal arts colleges, as a faculty member, associate dean and chief academic officer to her role as president of Mount Saint Mary’s University. She is passionate about the importance of women's colleges, and is a strong advocate for women's education and leadership issues. "I look forward to continuing and enhancing the Mount's focus on a holistic academic program with the highest educational standards, an appreciation for the personal and communal sense of beauty and a call to meaningful service," McElaney-Johnson said. "Through its many innovative initiatives to propel all students to lives of leadership and service, Mount St. Mary's leads the way in what a liberal arts college of the 21st century should be."

"We celebrate the inauguration of Ann McElaney-Johnson as the 12th president of Mount Saint Mary’s University," said Susan Lennon, president of the Women's College Coalition. "The landscape of higher education has changed dramatically since the Mount was founded in 1925. What has remained constant in this sea of change is the steadfast, resounding, and unequivocal commitment of the Mount and its women's college peers to contemporary interpretations of their founding missions – to transform the world through the education and success of women across all age, race, socioeconomic and religious groups."

"I congratulate President McElaney-Johnson on this great personal achievement, and Mount St. Mary's for being a valued and significant partner in higher education in Los Angeles for nearly nine decades," said Supervisor Ridley-Thomas.

McElaney-Johnson served in a variety of leadership positions at Salem College, founded in 1772, which is the nation's oldest continually operating institution for women in the United States. In addition to her responsibilities as an administrator, she was a Professor of French and enjoyed working with students in the classroom. Prior to tenure at Salem College, she served as a faculty member and coordinator of faculty development at Ripon College, Wisc. She earned her PhD in French from the University of Wisconsin-Madison, and her Master's degree from Middlebury College, Vt., and her Bachelor of Arts from the College of the Holy Cross, Mass.

Her research interests focus on Francophone women writers in Sub-Saharan Africa and she has presented her work at both domestic and international conferences. She is active in numerous educational and civic organizations and was the recipient of the 2010 YWCA Woman of Vision award in Winston-Salem, N.C., where she served on the Crosby Scholars Program Executive Board; Sara Lee Center for Women's Health Advisory Board; Brethren Colleges Abroad Academic Council; United Way Academic Advisory Committee; and the Women's Council of the Forsyth Medical Center Foundation Executive Committee. She also served as a member of the Board of Trustees for the Southern Association for Colleges and Universities Commission on Colleges.

McElaney-Johnson is married to David Johnson, and has three grown daughters, Emma, Rachel and Caroline. She succeeds President Emerita Jacqueline Powers Doud.

For more information and a full schedule of inaugural events, visit

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