“I am ready to serve as your 10th president”: Viterbo’s presidential inauguration of Richard Trietley


Grace Monk, Editor

On October 14, Viterbo inaugurated Richard Trietley as the university’s 10th president. Leading up to the inauguration, students, faculty, and members of the Viterbo community spent the week celebrating Trietley’s accomplishment.  

Following the departure of the university’s ninth president, Glena Temple, Trietley began serving as interim president on June 25, 2021. After 8 months, the Viterbo Board of Trustees officially named him president on Feb. 8, 2022.  

Prior to his time at Viterbo, Trietley attended Bonaventure University and served in the military for 22 years. He came to Viterbo in 2017 where he then served as vice president for six years. In addition to his history in Catholic education and leadership, Trietley’s time as interim president made the Viterbo community and Board of Trustees feel confident that he was the right choice. 

The festivities began on Wednesday, Oct. 12, at San Damiano Chapel with a lecture by Franciscan scholar Sister Margaret Carney. Carney has a long history in Franciscan teachings and served as President at Bonaventure University, where she fostered Trietley’s career in higher education. Carney spoke to Viterbo students and faculty about Franciscan values, spoke about Trietley, and gave the inaugural address. Trietley later thanked Carney in his inaugural speech, saying her “leadership, mentorship, and friendship are something I will always cherish.”  

On Thursday, Oct. 15, the Inauguration Games Kickball Tournament took place in the Assisi Courtyard where Trietley played kickball with Viterbo students and faculty. The tournament gave Trietley an opportunity to connect with different members of the community, while also engaging in friendly competition.  

Trietley’s inauguration officially took place at the Fine Arts Center on Friday at 2 p.m. Classes were cancelled, and campus offices closed that afternoon so students and faculty could attend the event. At the inauguration Trietley’s peers and members of the Viterbo Community took the stage to speak about him. Dr. Maria Morgan-Bathke was selected to represent Viterbo Faculty and spoke about Trietley’s leadership. She stated that Trietley “built, guided, and preserved [Viterbo’s] community through difficult years during the global pandemic.” Bathke spoke about Trietley’s 2027 vision for the university, stating that “his vision clearly displays his devotion and support of academic excellence.” Viterbo’s faculty has confidence in Trietley and knows that “he will be sure our sails are leading us in the right direction,” said Bathke.  

“I am in awe,” said Trietley as he began his speech. Trietley was the last to speak and approached the podium with tears in his eyes. “Only ten presidents have had the privilege of leading this university,” said Trietley. “Serving as president is an honor I do not take lightly, nor will I ever.” He thanked his various supporters, concluding with his wife Michelle, and two sons Kyle and Ricky. “I am proud to be your husband and so blessed that we will serve Viterbo together,” said Trietley as he spoke to his wife.  

Trietley also expressed his excitement for the future of Viterbo, promising to uphold the university’s reputation as the premier servant leadership program in the nation. “I am ready to serve as your 10th president and I am ready to serve all of you,” said Trietley, closing his speech with the following remarks: “God bless. Peace and all good. Go V-hawks!”