Epworth president John Holler to retire

John Holler will step down after 15 years as Epworth’s President and CEO.

His father was campus physician for both Epworth and Columbia College for 30 years.

“I absolutely love what I do, but as I approach 74 years of age, I want to leave before the time comes when people begin to hope I will leave,” Holler said.

Holler informed the Epworth Board of Trustees two years ago that 2021 would likely be his retirement year. Board members have been working toward a seamless transition since that time through the Futures Committee, chaired by the Rev. Daniel Burbage and later through a Search Committee chaired by the Rev. Debra Armstrong.

Epworth’s new president will be announced later this spring.

“This is an ideal time to retire,” Holler said. “Epworth will complete the Every Child is a Miracle financial campaign. It is Epworth’s 125th birthday year, and most importantly the new Institute for Child and Family Wellbeing is moving forward at a rapid pace with programs across our state. It is largely due to our strong church support that Epworth has been able to stay ahead of the rapidly changing landscape of state and federal childcare.”

Epworth serves an average of 258 individuals every day, and the number grows each month. Children placed with Epworth foster parents represented the largest growth area this past year.

When Holler was asked how he was going to fill his time after he retires, he responded by saying, “I can’t imagine not working so I will do something. It will most likely be something part-time in the area of child welfare. But I plan to spend time on my tractor, and on my motorcycle, and with my grandchildren until they get to the age where I embarrass them.”

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