Florida State College paid tribute to President Emeritus John Thrasher Saturday with the dedication of a bronze statue that acknowledges his vital place within the college’s lengthy and wealthy historical past.
Thrasher, a two-time alumnus who served as FSU’s fifteenth president between 2014-2021, elevated the college’s repute as a preeminent analysis establishment and guided the college in a rare climb within the tutorial rankings.
His statue stands on Westcott Plaza close to the long-lasting Westcott Fountain. FSU’s Grasp Craftsman Studio and principal artist Sandy Proctor created the brand new monument that captures Thrasher in one among his biggest moments of pleasure — greeting new graduates throughout graduation.
President Richard McCullough welcomed Thrasher and First Girl Jean Thrasher again to campus and thanked them for his or her heat, friendship and sensible counsel they’ve shared since he and First Girl Jai Vartikar arrived at FSU.
“His daring imaginative and prescient guided FSU’s path of unprecedented tutorial excellence and his sturdy management was a gentle power throughout occasions of each triumph and tribulation,” McCullough mentioned. “Whether or not celebrating an athletic championship or navigating a worldwide pandemic, he and Jean served the college group with empathy, heat and good humor.”
Throughout his presidency, Thrasher presided over a profitable $1 billion fundraising marketing campaign; superior the college’s tutorial and analysis mission; championed range, fairness, and inclusion; and enhanced pupil success.
“I’m personally and professionally grateful for the good issues John and his group did to take this college and construct the muse that now we have right now,” McCullough mentioned. “That basis is the place my administration is choosing up and taking the college to the following degree. With out that basis, we wouldn’t be speaking about making an attempt to get into the Prime 15 or turning into an AAU college. We might not be within the dialog as among the best public universities within the nation if it weren’t for John Thrasher and his management group.”
Thrasher arrived at Florida State College in 1961 as a 17-year-old freshman and graduated in 1965 with a bachelor’s diploma in enterprise. After graduating, Thrasher joined the U.S. Military, the place he obtained the Military Commendation Medal and was awarded two Bronze Stars for his service in Vietnam. He then returned to FSU the place he earned his regulation diploma in 1972. He has given again to FSU in some ways, together with serving as its first-ever chairman of the Board of Trustees.
“That is an incredible place; it is a life-changing place,” Thrasher mentioned after the statue unveiling. “That’s what occurred to me. It modified my life, and I do know it’s modified the lives of so many college students who’ve been right here and can proceed to come back right here.”
Peter Collins, chair of the FSU Board of Trustees, thanked Thrasher for his contributions for the college and his enduring legacy.
“You’re judged by how you permit a spot,” he mentioned. “Whenever you step on this campus, you’re feeling the household environment,” Collins mentioned. “All people talks about it; everyone talks in regards to the tradition. You’ve left that higher than it was once you acquired right here.”
The Thrashers have been joined through the ceremony by their kids, Jennifer and Don Jordan; Jon Thrasher; and Julie Weinberg, and several other of their eight grandchildren.
“Your statue, Dad, will likely be a steady reminder that you’ll greet all college students, workers and alumni with heat and love that at all times had for FSU,” mentioned Jennifer Jordan, Thrasher’s eldest daughter. “Our household is so pleased with you. We are going to take pleasure in coming to see your statue and replicate in your legacy for years to come back.”