President Kathy A. Krendl, Ph.D., the 20th president and the first woman to lead Otterbein University, took office July 1, 2009. Otterbein, a comprehensive master’s institution, has an enrollment of 3,000 undergraduate and graduate students and offers degree programs in arts and sciences and professional studies. During President Krendl’s tenure at Otterbein, the institution has won national recognition as an “Educational Innovator” and an “Up and Comer” with its focus on integrating direct experience into all learning. Otterbein is also noted for its dedication to community engagement, consistently winning a place on the President’s Honor Roll of community-engaged institutions as well as its inclusion in the Carnegie Foundation’s Community Engagement Classification.
President Krendl began her academic career at Indiana University, holding teaching and administrative positions as a tenured faculty member from 1983 through 1996. In her last position there she served as Dean of IU’s state-wide School of Continuing Studies with offices on eight campuses.
In 1996, President Krendl was recruited as dean of the Scripps College of Communication at Ohio University. In 2004, she was appointed Academic Vice President and Provost, and in 2007, was promoted to Executive Vice President and Provost at the institution. As Executive Vice President, she led Ohio University’s first-ever strategic plan.
At Otterbein President Krendl has led the institution in becoming a university, transitioning to a semester calendar, and developing new undergraduate and graduate programs including its first doctoral program, the Doctorate in Nursing Practice. Otterbein has also developed programs building on its strengths in the sciences with recent launches of a Zoo and Conservation Science program and a Systems Engineering program. The institution now offers summer camps for audiences of all ages, a growing number of hybrid and on-line courses, and opportunities for high school students to earn college credits at a reduced rate through the Otterbein Collegiate Institute. Institutional partnerships also offer new pathways to degrees for students with associate to baccalaureate degree agreements with six two-year institutions.
President Krendl serves on the boards of the Columbus YWCA, I Know I Can, the Osteopathic Heritage Foundation, and Ohio Campus Compact. In addition, she chairs the Executive Committee of the Association for Independent Colleges and Universities of Ohio (AICUO).
President Krendl resides in Westerville with her husband, Richard S. Gilbert, who teaches writing at Otterbein. Their children, Claire and Tom, are both graduates of Northwestern University. Claire earned her doctorate at Penn State and is currently an IT administrator at Virginia Tech. Tom completed his master’s degree at University of Cambridge and is now a doctoral student in sociology at Berkeley.