Mark Putnam

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Mark L. Putnam
Central College President Mark Putnam.jpg
President of Central College
In office
July 1, 2010 – present
Preceded by David H. Roe
Personal details
Spouse(s) Tammy
Children Emma, Greta
Alma mater Nyack College, Teachers College, Columbia University
Profession college administrator

Mark Putnam is the 21st president of Central College, a liberal arts college located in Pella, Iowa, a community of 10,000 and rooted in Christian and Dutch heritage. He was appointed to the role July 1, 2010,[3] and inauguration ceremonies were Oct. 22, 2010. Prior to his presidency appointment at Central College, Putnam served as senior vice president for executive affairs, chief of staff and chief planning officer at Northeastern University in Boston, Mass., where he held a succession of leadership roles over 10 years. He also held senior administrative appointments and positions at Connecticut College, Alliance Theological Seminary (N.Y.), Nyack College (N.Y.) and Pace University (N.Y.), and began his career in higher education as an admission counselor at Nyack College in 1983.[1]

Putnam authors a blog, Mark: my words,[4] to encourage civil discourse. He's been published in the Chicago Tribune for Through the Eyes of an Eighth Grader and in The Des Moines Register for We need to learn to listen to our young athletes, which was reprinted in The Sport Digest. He also was featured in a podcast discussing his blog with The Chronicle of Higher Education[5] and is a keynote speaker at the American Marketing Association’s 2011 Symposium.

In 2010, Putnam was invited to participate in roundtable discussions in Washington, D.C., with the Department of Education, the Association of American Colleges and Universities (AACU) and Global Perspective Institute Inc. (GPI). Additionally, he accepted an invitation to participate in the Higher Education Working Group on Global Issues for the Council on Foreign Relations (N.Y.).

National associations[edit]

American Council on Education (ACE) Council for Independent Colleges (CIC) National Association of Independent Colleges and Universities (NAICU)

In his first year as president, he was nominated for membership to The Greater Des Moines Committee and invited to the APPA Educational Leadership Facilities national conference. He serves as a board member for the Greater Des Moines Partnership, Pella Area Development Corporation (PADCO), as chair for president's group of the Iowa Association of Independent Colleges and Universities (IAICU) and as a board member for Iowa Campus Compact. He was chair of the Iowa Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (IIAC) presidents for 2011-12. Altogether, Putnam is active in nearly two dozen professional, spiritual and service organizations at the local, regional and national levels.


He and his wife Tammy live in Pella. Their two daughters, Emma and Greta, attend Northeastern University in Boston, Mass.


Teachers College, Columbia University - New York, NY
Doctor of Education - Higher Education Administration, 1994. Dissertation title
“The Role of Formal and Informal Sources of Information in Trustee Decision Making at Small Private Colleges Struggling for Survival.”
Master of Education - Higher Education Administration, 1993.
Master of Arts - Student Personnel Administration in Higher Education, 1990.
Nyack College - Nyack, NY
Bachelor of ArtsPhilosophy, 1983.


  1. ^ a b Nyack College in 1983
  2. ^ "Inauguration set for next week". Pella Chronicle. 15 October 2010. Retrieved 1 June 2011. He and wife Tammy have two daughters, Emma, a junior at Northeastern University (Mass.), and Greta, a freshman at Pella Middle School. 
  3. ^ "Dr. Mark Putnam named Central College's 21st president". Central College. Retrieved 2010-08-17. 
  4. ^ [1],Mark:my words
  5. ^ [2],The Chronicle of Higher Education

External links[edit]