IMSA Announces the Retirement of Dr. José M. Torres at End of Academic Year | Illinois Mathematics and Science Academy

IMSA Announces the Retirement of Dr. José M. Torres at End of Academic Year

Aurora, IL – After a long career in public education, Dr. José M. Torres, President of Illinois Mathematics and Science Academy, plans to retire at the end of the academic year, the Board of Trustees announced yesterday.

Torres first notified the Board of his intent to retire in December 2018. Board Chairman Dr. Erin Roche said that the Trustees have been working to prepare themselves for a presidential search and to develop a transition plan.

Dr. Torres assumed the role of President in 2014.  Since taking the reins, Torres’ tenure persevered through three years with no state-appropriated budget, developed a board-approved diversity, equity and inclusion policy, executed on global vision-building, increased diversity in students and staff, completed renovation of two science labs, the Steve and Jamie Chen Center for Innovation and the auditorium, and secured IMSA as the host of the 14th annual International Student Science Fair, the first time that event was held in the United States.

Torres also launched Vision 2022 which focused IMSA on public accountability with ambitious targets and re-ignited IMSA’s identity as a learning laboratory with its current theme of the United Nations 17 Sustainable Development Goals.

“Dr. Torres has led IMSA through crises with quiet strength and resolve, realistic optimism and a commitment to helping our students, parents and staff, including faculty, deal with fear and accept change,” Dr. Erin Roche, Chair of the IMSA Board of Trustees.

“He has been resilient with each obstacle that has come his way,” Roche continued.

Roche praised Torres’ thoughtful and decisive action amidst the uncertainty of COVID-19 to begin the fall semester with remote learning to limit the spread of the virus while ensuring the continuity of IMSA’s educational mission.

“He is mission-minded and embodies IMSA’s values of innovation and inquiry, experimentation and data-driven strategy,” said Roche. “His vision, energy and passion is equity and his legacy will be that IMSA is a better place for all students and society,” added Roche.

In his final year, Torres will focus on IMSA’s recovery from COVID-19 and his equity and excellence agenda.

“I am very excited by the opportunity to focus on action seeded from our equity and excellence plan and a resolve to thrive from the pandemic in the coming year,” Torres said.

“There’s lots to do,” he added.

In the meantime, Roche says the Board is well prepared to launch a national search for IMSA’s next president.

“We are treating the presidential transition as a strategic imperative which supports and protects IMSA’s reputation, value proposition, and integrity,” he said.

“The Board is committed to a transparent and inclusive process, including the commencement of a Presidential Search Committee with representation from alumni, faculty and staff and regular communication with our community,” said Roche.

Torres’ last day is expected to be May 31, 2021.