Quincy University’s Board of Trustees unanimously approved the hiring of Phil Conover as president in a special board meeting on Saturday, September 9th, 2017. Conover has been serving as acting president since May 15, 2017 after the resignation of Dr. Robert Gervasi who left to become president of Ohio Dominican University. Conover will serve as president through the 2018-19 academic year.
“Phil has been a tremendous asset for QU since agreeing to come on board as chief operations officer last December,” said Fr. Tom Nairn, OFM, chair of the QU Board of Trustees. “The steering committee of the board approached Phil with the idea of staying on for a longer term to provide stability and continuity for our students, faculty and staff.”
The search process for the University’s 24th President launched in June, and will continue under the leadership of Mike McClain. This change will allow the committee enough time to conduct a thorough search to find the best possible person to lead the university.
“I am honored by the confidence the Board of Trustees has placed in me and I am committed to the long-term success of QU,” said Phil Conover. “This is not something I was looking for, but I have agreed to continue in my service for the greater good of QU because I know how important this institution is to Quincy and the tri-state area.”
Under Conover’s leadership, the University has seen several new partnerships including expanded program offerings with John Wood Community College. In addition, Conover was instrumental in quantifying QU’s $53M annual economic benefit to the region.
“We are blessed that Phil has agreed to serve in this role,” said Del Mitchell, vice chair of the QU Board of Trustees. “His relationships with area businesses and civic leaders, along with those relationships he has formed with our faculty, staff and students will serve us well as we continue to move QU forward.”
Conover has an extensive background in higher education including serving as a member and vice-chair of QU’s Board of Trustees and as interim vice president of instruction for John Wood Community College. He was also interim president of the Great River Economic Development Foundation. Conover attended Illinois State University and graduated from Arizona State University with a B.A. in history and a M.A. in guidance and counseling. He taught and coached in several local high schools during his career. He also worked at Quincy Notre Dame High School as basketball coach, dean of students, and assistant principal. He later worked as a financial advisor at Blunt Ellis & Loewi and eventually retired from Wachovia Securities. Conover served as QU Annual Fund Chair with his brother Joe in 2004. He has served the community as a board member of John Wood Community College, GREDF, Quincy Notre Dame High School, and Blessing Hospital.