Ronald Crutcher

President Emeritus, Wheaton College (MA)

Ronald A. Crutcher is a national leader in higher education and an active scholar and musician. He served as the seventh president of Wheaton College from 2004 to 2014.  In recognition of their tremendous contributions to Wheaton over the past ten years, the Board of Trustees established the Ronald and Betty Neal Crutcher Scholarship (  

Under President Crutcher’s leadership, Wheaton developed the largest capital project in its history, a $46 million science center, designed to promote science education and interdisciplinary scholarship. A LEED Gold-certified complex, the Mars Center for Science and Technology opened in the fall of 2011 and was one of several priorities in “Go Beyond:  Campaign for Wheaton.”  In April 2013, the Campaign reached its $120 million goal fourteen months in advance of the targeted conclusion. At its conclusion on June 30, 2014, the Campaign had raised more than $137 million, eclipsing previous campaigns in the college’s 179-year history.

Dr. Crutcher currently serves as co-chair of LEAP (Liberal Education and America's Promise), the Association of American Colleges and Universities' national campaign to demonstrate the value of liberal education. He is past chair of the AAC&U's Board of Directors and formerly served on the Board of the American Council on Education.

Current board memberships include the Posse Foundation in New York City and the Boston Symphony Orchestra Board of Overseers.  Dr. Crutcher is also an international trustee of the Cleveland Orchestra and a member of the Advisory Board for the Sphinx Organization.  Formerly, he served as President of Chamber Music America for six years.

Dr. Crutcher has also served on two corporate boards.  From 2004 until 2008, he was a member of the Board of Directors for Bucyrus International; he served on the Compensation Committee and the Audit Committee.  He was a member of the Board of Governors of the Tournament Players Club of Boston from 2006 until 2014.

In 2012, he received the Posse Star for a college president.  The Posse Foundation awards the Posse Star to an individual who “exhibits leadership, who makes a significant contribution in the field of education, and who positively affects people’s lives.”  He has also received two honorary degrees:  a Doctor of Laws from Wheaton College and a Doctor of Music from Colgate University.  In 2005, he received the Presidential Medal of Honor from the University of Cordoba in Spain.  His alma mater, the Yale University School of Music, bestowed upon him the Ian Mininberg Distinguished Alumni Award in 2009.  In 2006, he received the Father of the Year Award from the Father’s Day Council of Boston and the American Diabetes Association.

Prior to Wheaton, he served as provost and executive vice president for academic affairs and professor of music at Miami University in Oxford, Ohio; director of the School of Music and the Florence Hall Centennial Chair in Music at the University of Texas at Austin (1994-99). Earlier he was vice president for academic affairs and dean of the conservatory at the Cleveland Institute of Music (1990-94), and associate vice chancellor for academic affairs at the University of North Carolina at Greensboro (1987-90).

A member of the Klemperer Trio for more than 35 years, he was previously a founding member of the Chanticleer String Quartet. He made his Carnegie Hall debut in March 1985 and has several recordings to his credit. His publications include journal articles on higher education, leadership, chamber music, and Black classical music.

A Phi Beta Kappa graduate of Miami University, Ronald Crutcher pursued graduate studies at Yale University as a Woodrow Wilson and Ford Foundation Fellow. In 1979, he was the first cellist to receive the Doctor of Musical Arts degree from Yale. The recipient of a Fulbright Award, he is fluent in German and studied at the University of Bonn and the Frankfurt State Academy of Music.

Dr. Crutcher and Dr. Betty Neal Crutcher will spend the 2014-2015 academic year in Berlin, Germany, where they will both be working on book projects.  Dr. Crutcher will also continue his performances with the Klemperer Trio.