M E M O R A N D U M
TO: Members of the Victoria University Community
FROM: William Robins, President
RE: Retirement of Principal Mark G. Toulouse
DATE: September 19, 2016
Professor Mark G. Toulouse has announced that he will retire from his position as Principal of Emmanuel College on June 30, 2017.
Under Professor Toulouse’s eight years of leadership, Emmanuel College has strengthened its longstanding tradition of academic excellence and has contributed notably to the transformation of theological education in Canada and North America. The College’s educational profile has been enhanced by several new academic programs introduced during his tenure, including the PhD degree, the MA degree, and the Certificate of Spiritual Care and Psychotherapy as part of the Master of Pastoral Studies, all offered conjointly with the University of Toronto, as well as a proposed new Bachelor of Theological Studies program. His innovative work with new constituencies, which has included the creation of Muslim and Buddhist Studies programs, has helped Emmanuel College become a prominent forum for dynamic interreligious engagement. Professor Toulouse has also revitalized the physical spaces of the College, spearheaded advancement efforts, and expanded the areas of recruitment, the registrar’s office, and contextual education.
Professor Toulouse began his duties as Principal of Emmanuel College in January 2009. Prior to his appointment at Emmanuel, he spent twenty-three years at Brite Divinity School in Fort Worth, Texas, eleven of which were spent as Dean and then as Executive Vice-President of the school. He began his work in theological education in 1984, when he joined the faculty of Phillips Theological Seminary in Enid, Oklahoma.
Professor Toulouse received his PhD in the History of Christianity from the University of Chicago in 1984. With a distinguished record of publications on the history and theology of North American Christianity, he has written or edited ten books, including a religious analysis of North American popular culture due out this November, The Altars Where We Worship: The Religious Significance of Popular Culture. His research and teaching have been supported by grants from the Association of Theological Schools, the Lilly Endowment, the Louisville Institute, the Wabash Centre for Teaching and Learning, the Henry Luce Foundation, and the Connaught Fund at the University of Toronto.
On behalf of Victoria University in the University of Toronto, I would like to thank Professor Toulouse for his extraordinary leadership of Emmanuel College. Emmanuel College and Victoria University are stronger thanks to the contributions he has made as an astute administrator and an inspiring colleague.