Dr. John S. Bailey President of the American College of Greece ATHENS, Greece — Dr. John Stephen Bailey, a leading figure in education, died on New Year’s Eve, Dec. 31, 2018, in Athens, Greece. He was 89. Dr. Bailey was born in Chicago, Illinois, the son of an educator mother and a businessman father. He moved to Boston with his family at a young age and distinguished himself as a student athlete, becoming the Eastern New England shotput champion. He earned his undergraduate degree from Boston University and his MBA from Northeastern University. Upon his graduation, he served as a Combat Infantry Officer in the Korean War and subsequently was awarded the U.S. Legion of Merit, Bronze Star for Valor, and Combat Infantryman Badge, the French Croix de Guerre and the Korean Military Service Medal. During the Berlin Crisis, he was called to serve in the Pentagon for a year. He went on to a career in the U.S. Army Reserves, retiring with the rank of Colonel. His professional educational career started at Northeastern University when, in 1959, President Asa Knowles appointed him his assistant. With Knowles as his mentor, Bailey served in several executive positions before assuming the deanship of University College, Northeastern’s largest division, with more than 10,000 students enrolled in degree programs on seven campuses. While in the position of director of public relations at Northeastern in 1962, he was honored as one of the “11 outstanding young men of Greater Boston,” along with Sen. Edward Kennedy and Boston Mayor Kevin White. In 1969, Bailey was named president of Nasson College, a private, NEASC-accredited College of Arts and Sciences in Maine. While at Nasson, he was elected president of the Higher Education Council of Maine, an organization of nearly 30 college presidents. In 1975, Bailey took over the presidency of Pierce College and Deree College in Athens, Greece, which he later placed under the umbrella name “The American College of Greece.” In his 33 years as president, one of the longest tenures among American university presidents, the college achieved its strongest rate of growth since it was founded in Smyrna, Asia Minor, in 1875. With Bailey at the helm, the college overcame weakness by achieving tremendous financial and academic growth. A building boom followed, including the gym, the communication building, the downtown campus, the chapel, the outdoor theater, the Olympic-size pool, the stadium, the center for the arts, the studio theater and the renovation of the old theater, the acquisition of the neoclassical building in the Plaka, in the heart of old Athens, to house the Attica Tradition Foundation and the alumni center. The library, followed by the extension of the library, increased its number of books from 20,000 to more than 150,000. During one highlight of Dr. Bailey’s presidency, the college hosted the U.S. Olympic Team for the Olympic Games of 2004. His keen interest in the arts inspired President Bailey’s vision for the college both in the academic programs and the extraordinary campus he developed. He cultivated a relationship with the U.S. sculptor Frances Rich, which ultimately led to a donation that endowed the college’s Frances Rich School of Fine and Performing Arts. Under Bailey’s leadership, the level of academic excellence was raised, and Deree College became the first educational institution outside of the U.S. to be accredited by the New England Association of Schools and Colleges. The college became a pioneer in business and computer information systems studies in Greece. The junior college, the school of communication, the graduate school, as well as the school for continuing & professional studies were established. He founded the "Institute of Global Affairs" and instituted the "Venizelos Chair" to honour the great statesman Eleftherios Venizelos. At the same time, Pierce College continued to rank among Greece’s top secondary schools. Enrollment in all divisions grew so dramatically that at one point over 30,000 of the 33,000 college alumni had received their diplomas from Bailey himself. Dr. Bailey’s career was notable for his dedication to creating opportunities for exceptional education. For his achievements, the board of trustees named the library after him and awarded him the degree of Doctor of Laws. After retiring as president of the college, he served as chancellor of the college until June 2011, and he continued to receive awards for his distinguished leadership in international higher education. As a measure of respect and appreciation, college flags will be flown at half-mast until Jan. 31, 2019. In the early-1960s, Dr. Bailey purchased a property in Elmore, Vermont, raising his family there in the summers. For the rest of his life, he spent part of every year looking out to the mountains on his beloved “farm.” Dr. John Stephen Bailey was predeceased by his first wife, Jane Carey, of Lexington, Massachusetts; his son, Stephen; and his grandson, Christopher Gould, of Montpelier, Vermont. He is survived by his daughter, Laurel Gould, of Montpelier, Vermont; and his second wife, Irene Korre-Bailey, of Athens, Greece, and their children Alexander, Philip and Oliver.

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