William T. Greer, Jr. Obituary, Death – Former President who dedicated more than two decades of service to Virginia Wesleyan It is with profound sadness that Virginia Wesleyan University (VWU) shares the news of the demise of William T. Greer, Jr., the university’s former president. It is impossible to adequately convey all that Dr. Greer, whom the Marlin family fondly refers to as “Billy,” has meant to them throughout their lives. During his tenure as president of Virginia Wesleyan, which spanned 23 years, the university experienced significant growth, including an increase in student enrollment.
The completion of a successful fundraising capital campaign, the introduction of a new four-credit curriculum with an emphasis on experiential learning, and the new construction and renovation of campus facilities such as the Jane P. Batten Student Center and Brock Village. Following his retirement in 2015, he was given the title of President Emeritus, and the Greer Environmental Sciences Center was named in his honor the following year (2017).
The introduction of the Birdsong Community Service Program was yet another significant achievement that occurred during Dr. Greer’s term at the university. This program significantly increased the number of chances for student involvement and support for the requirements of the community. This program eventually morphed into another one called Wesleyan Engaged, which is now an essential part of the university’s overall mission.
Dr. Greer had previously held the position of president at Brevard College and Andrew College, in addition to serving as a United Methodist Minister in his home state of Georgia, prior to his appointment as president of Virginia Wesleyan College in 1992. He has served on the Board of Directors of the National Association of Schools and Colleges of the United Methodist Church as well as the Board of Directors of the Virginia Foundation of Independent Colleges. He has also been a visiting scholar at Princeton Theological Seminary.
Dr. Greer was a devoted follower of VWU Athletics, and the university honored him by inducting him into the VWU Athletic Hall of Fame in the year 2015. During his time as head coach of the Marlins, the program achieved a number of successes, including winning the NCAA Men’s Basketball National Championship in 2006, advancing to the Final Four in the NCAA Women’s Soccer Championship in 2006, winning 29 conference championships, making 46 team NCAA appearances, 7 individual NCAA appearances, and having 51 players named to the All-American team. Dr. Greer played a significant role in paving the way for advancements to be made to Virginia Wesleyan’s sporting facilities. These advancements include the development of the Jane P. Batten Student Center, the Trinder Center and Foster Field (both of which are now a part of the Tassos Paphites Soccer Complex), and the Everett Tennis Center, among others.
Dr. Greer believed that his role at Virginia Wesleyan was to both broaden the College’s vision and image as well as build on the successes that had already been achieved. In response to the news that he will be retiring soon, Dr. Greer stated, “My time here has been a labor of love.” I am looking forward to graduating from the College with a solid foundation for a prosperous future. Indeed, he did it. After more than two decades of devoted devotion to Virginia Wesleyan, Dr. Greer, his wife Fann, and their family have earned a tremendous amount of our thanks. We owe them a significant debt of gratitude. He won the hearts of many people on campus, including students, staff, and faculty, and he will be sorely missed by all of them.
Funeral rites are going to be carried out in Asheville, which is located in North Carolina. In lieu of sending flowers, the Greer family has requested that donations be donated to the Volkswagen University Athletics Department. In the upcoming weeks, members of the Marlin community will get together to honor Dr. Greer’s life and legacy by holding a celebration in his honor. More information will be provided here when it becomes available to us.