Originally created 01/18/01

SCAD's founder resigns



SAVANNAH - Richard G. Rowan, credited by many as the visionary behind the creation, growth and expansion of Savannah College of Art and Design, has resigned from the college he co-founded 22 years ago.

Mr. Rowan served as president from the institution's inception in 1978 until April, when he was named chancellor and Paula Rowan (now Paula Wallace) became president and CEO.

The former husband-and-wife team, along with her parents, May and Paul Poetter, began the college with one downtown building and 71 students; today the internationally known art school boasts 5,000 students and a campus of more than 50 buildings, most of them renovated downtown structures.

"The challenge of founding the Savannah College of Art and Design and overseeing its development has been the most satisfying professional accomplishment I can imagine for anyone," Mr. Rowan said in a statement released by SCAD. "I feel confident that the college will build on its past successes to attain even greater heights."

The college gave no reason for the resignation, and he could not be reached for comment.

Ms. Wallace expressed confidence that SCAD is on the right track.

"As we move into the future, we will continue to provide our students with the best faculty, newest technology and the preparation necessary to excel in their careers," she said.

In addition to Mr. Rowan's departure, three members of SCAD's board of trustees resigned, including board Chairman Bernie Casey and longtime members Hugh M. Dorsey III and William L. Grainger.

Banker John Burger of San Antonio and Los Angeles, will replace Mr. Casey as chairman.