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Dr. Jaque Carter

You always have a home at Doane

Dr. Jacque Carter served as the 12th President of Doane College and then Doane University from 2011 to 2021. He carried Doane through the process of becoming a university in 2016, through the introduction of new programs to meet emerging student and career needs, and, most recently, through one of the toughest of the university’s past 149 years.

During his decade in Crete, Dr. Carter handed diplomas to thousands of Doane students at commencement ceremonies. A phrase he frequently used to welcome newly minted alumni was: “You always have a home at Doane.”

Thank you for making Doane your home for the past 10 years, Dr. Carter.

 

Marty Fye ’83 - Vice President for Institutional Advancement

I had the pleasure of working with Jacque in the last five years of his presidency. He studied closely what other universities were doing to create and measure success. His entrepreneurial spirit led him to implement some very successful programs that will ensure the future of Doane.

For example, he demonstrated leadership and courage in the implementation of the online program. Circumstances slowed the execution, but he stood up with certainty for its importance and its success.

The engineering major is another example of a great idea that has been successful for both the university and the first two classes of students to graduate from the program. Jacque not only implemented the creation of the program, but he raised the money to get it started.

 

Dr. Amanda Renshaw ’98 McKinney - Associate Dean of Health Sciences and Executive Director of the Institute for Human and Planetary Health

Dr. Carter has always had a passion for the natural world. He would recount stories about his childhood in Illinois and his bedroom full of fish tanks (His mother must have been a saint!). This love led to his training as a “fish guy” and his work protecting coral reefs.

Recognition of the need to protect the natural ecosystems upon which humans depend for survival, also led us to become fast and lifelong friends. It’s also what led him to bring me to Doane to start the Institute for Human and Planetary Health. Like much of what he did at Doane, it was visionary and ahead of its time.

I believe that the transformative changes Jacque made will remain part of the Doane fabric. There’s no doubt that Jacque left an indelible legacy on this institution that we all love and call home.

 

Jill Smith ’74 - Former Chair and current member of the Board of Trustees

I served as Chair of the Board of Trustees for six years of Jacque’s tenure at Doane. During that time, we changed from a college to a university, developed a successful online program that has greatly benefitted Doane’s financial health, added both academic and athletic programs to the Crete campus, and secured a $5 million donation toward the fine arts project.

I always admired Jacque’s vision and entrepreneurial spirit. It hasn’t always been easy. Jacque never gave the Board or me any time off because he never took any time off. He was continually pushing us with new ideas, always with the best interest of Doane and our students in mind. On a personal note, I think we made a good team. We didn’t always agree, but we always did so respectfully.

From the Board’s perspective, it is important to recognize Judy Carter as well. She is a phenomenal hostess. Not only did she help entertain spouses during our meetings, but she also was instrumental in planning the meals and entertainment as well as hosting dinners and receptions at the Bauer House, including making some of the wonderful food!

 

Rev. Jeff Hagaman ’80 - Doane Alumnus and long-time friend of Dr. Jacque Carter

Some of the lasting memories I have of Jacque revolve around his interest in fish and education. (It’s a nice coincidence that fish have schools too.) He once found himself helping local children catch fish at the annual Doane Fishing Derby. The girls he sponsored were catching enough fish out of Doane Lake that he called me to help bait the girls’ fish hooks. It was a chilly day but bright with the joy of sharing the campus with the community. The whole lake was lined with fisher-folk.

His scientific interests were almost always pursued outside. He was very supportive of Spring Creek Prairie Audubon Center. Not only did he donate money, but he shared his time out there. For one educational experience at the prairie, he dressed up as a sunfish and stood in a pond near a bridge. There were several other “animals” scattered around the prairie in what would be their habitat. Jacque was not the only critter sharing information about what it was like to be an animal of the prairie. Families would walk on the bridge and ask the “sunfish” about his life cycle. More than once, Jacque had to greet the passers as some were not so sure what to make of a guy standing in the pond dressed as a fish.