HAWKINS, Texas (KETK) – Jarvis Christian University has announced that their current president and CEO is retiring in June, after 11 years at the school.

Dr. Lester C. Newman started as JCU president in April of 2012 and has worked in higher education for 47 years. During his tenure at JCU, he helped save the school from “financial peril” and brought them to the point of operating without any debt, according to a press release.

Dr. Newman also helped with turning around low enrollment, reviving Bulldog athletics, expanding degree programs and expanding the schools reach to Dallas. According to the school, he recently brought them from being a college to a university through the creation of their business and criminal justice master’s degrees.

“Some of you have heard rumors. Some of you have probably had bets,” Dr. Newman said. “But there comes a time when a leader knows it is time to step aside.  Jarvis needs a new perspective, new energy and a new leader. I called this meeting today because I wanted my students, faculty and staff to hear it from me first.”

Newman said the Jarvis board of trustees has a process to name his successor and he will support their choice for new leadership. According to a press release, a new president is expected to be be announced before July 1.