The Pleger Years, 2014-2017
“We want to see our students succeed, achieve, and develop an excitement and passion for learning and for the university. We’re redefining the classroom to make that happen. Come see for yourself! A campus tour is the best way to determine if LSSU is the right place for you. We’re confident that once you’re here, you won’t want to leave.” – Thomas Pleger, Ph.D
Thomas Pleger, Ph.D., was LSSU’s eighth president, serving from July 1, 2014 until his sudden passing on May 7, 2017. Pleger oversaw completion of the R.W. Considine Hall Renovation project. He also played an integral role in securing capital funding for the proposed Center for Freshwater Research and Education. He served on Gov. Rick Snyder’s 21st Century Economy Commission as the only member from the Upper Peninsula. Lake State also gained a 10-year re-accreditation from the Higher Learning Commission in 2016.
Prior to LSSU, Pleger worked 21 years for the University of Wisconsin system, serving most recently as dean and campus executive officer at the University of Wisconsin-Baraboo/Sauk County.
Pleger received a doctorate in archeology and anthropology from the University of Wisconsin-Madison and was a licensed archeologist who specialized in the Upper Great Lakes Region, specifically the use of copper technology by prehistoric Native Americans.
Pleger grew up in Marinette, Wisconsin, on the shore of Lake Michigan and Green Bay. He and his wife, Teresa, moved to the Upper Peninsula when he accepted the role of president. An ardent advocate for higher education, Pleger dedicated his brief tenure to serving the students and instilling in them a love of learning.