Carlston to retire as 16th Snow College president
By Robert Stevens
EPHRAIM—After leading Snow College since 2014, the school’s 16th top man, Gary Carlston and his wife, Janet, are retiring the presidency.
The couple, who’s connection to the two-year community college dates back to the 1960s when they were students, conveyed their deep, life-long affection for the higher education epicenter of Central Utah.
“We love Snow College,” the Carltons wrote in statement. “It has been both an honor and a privilege for us to be here and to observe firsthand the teaching and care for our students from faculty and staff.
“Because of the work and support of so many, including key legislators, regents, trustees, faculty, staff, our leadership team and other stakeholders, the college has seen success. We have proudly told the Snow College story; and we will miss our colleagues, the students and this wonderful college.”
Their retirement comes on the heels of a historic $8.2 million equity and quality initiative appropriation that was intended to raise faculty and staff salaries to the median average, implement athletic facility overhauls and improvements, and address other vital needs.
Other notable achievements under Carlston’s watch were the construction of the Robert M. and Joyce S. Graham Science Center on the Ephraim Campus, as well as a solidification of the message “one college, two campuses,” with continued improvements on Snow’s Richfield campus—including improved parking and classroom facilities.
President Carlston was there to oversee the academic and extra-curricular advancements of the college, such as an associate of fine arts degree, a four-year degree in software engineering, a four-year degree in business in partnership with Utah State University and an intercollegiate soccer program.
Scott Bushnell, chair of the Snow College Board of Trustees, said, “President Carlston has made a profound impact on Snow College. I feel strongly that he and his capable wife, Janet, were appointed to this presidency at the right time in Snow’s history. Their talents have created opportunities, and specific needs have been met during their tenure.
Members of the Board of Trustees want to extend their sincere appreciation to the Carlstons for their outstanding service and strong leadership. The ‘Spirit of Snow’ is alive and well because of them.”
Marci Larsen, the president’s assistant, weighed in on the retirement announcement with her own message of affection for the president and his wife.
“I have been fortunate to work with and learn from the Carlstons since their arrival in 2014,” Larsen said. “They are both kind, genuine people who I have come to admire and love. They are quick to express appreciation and give credit to others (and they really don’t like attention), but make no mistake about it—success starts at the top.”
The Carlstons take an inclusive, collaborative approach to solving problems and decision making, Larsen emphasized.
“It’s nearly impossible to talk about President Carlston without talking about Janet,” Larsen said. “They are a team and I have been blessed to have a front-row seat to their lives—lives that are full of warmth, goodness, generosity, concern for others, love for each other and their family and this college. I’m better personally and professionally because of their influence in my life. They will be missed. “
The Utah State Board of Regents will appoint a committee to conducting a nation-wide search to select Snow College’s next president. Carlston will continue to steer the ship until his successor has been chosen, which the board anticipates to be sometime in early 2019.