TCNJ Magazine: Spring 18

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7 SPRING 2018 'Well, that explains everything.' I think they mean I walk fast, I talk fast. There's a directness to the way I come at the world." Still, Foster knows when humility is required: She's been to seven Bruce Springsteen concerts — "I realize that puts me in deep amateur status." A t Farmington, Foster often invoked her training in urban planning. She oversaw the creation of a strategic plan for the university, a master plan for campus buildings and grounds, and plans for fundraising, student recruitment, and marketing. She is also credited with stemming a downward slide in enrollment, which Foster says had been in "free fall" for five years. Foster says her first order of business at TCNJ will be to take a listening tour of the campus community — from students to faculty to alumni — something she also did at Farmington. "The getting-to-know-you phase isn't just a check-the-box phase," Foster says. "It enables me to become the president that the school deserves." And what does she want the TCNJ community to know about her? "I want them to know I am approachable," she says. "There's a down-to-earthness about me." ■ —Christopher Hann that's a good thing for the college. The institution is much bigger than any one of us." "What appealed to me was that this school's had an amazing evolution," Foster says of TCNJ. "It has academic rigor, and it's selective. And it's committed to the same values that I am committed to." Like Gitenstein, Foster is an advocate for shared governance. F. Celeste Branham, vice president for student services at the University of Maine at Farmington, says Foster's leadership skills proved especially adept during planning initiatives. "Those processes really reflect the kind of leader she is — one who is highly consultative, who wants feedback, who lets feedback inform how we proceed," Branham says. "This is a woman who is a visionary. She has brilliant ideas, but she does not impose her ideas by fiat." F oster's new job will herald a homecoming of sorts. She grew up in Verona, about 60 miles northeast of TCNJ. New Jersey, she says, "was the only fishbowl I knew for the first 18 years of my life." As a peripatetic adult, her Garden State bona fides did not go unnoticed. "People say, 'You're not from here,'" Foster recalls. "I say, 'I'm from New Jersey,' and they say, In high gear (from top) Foster her junior year at Johns Hopkins. With her Swazi "mom" in 1989. Perfecting her golf game while at University at Buffalo. Facing page: Foster takes her first selfie with TCNJ students. Professional President 2012–18 Director UB Regional Institute 2005–11 Professor and Chair Department of Urban and Regional Planning 1993–2011 President 2018– COURTESY KATHRYN FOSTER. FACING PAGE: LAUREN H. ADAMS BROOKINGS Visiting Fellow 2011–12

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