Secretary of the University Jim Farrar to Retire James D. Farrar Jr., secretary of the university and senior advisor to the president at Washington and Lee, has announced his retirement effective Dec. 31, 2021.
James D. Farrar Jr., secretary of the university and senior advisor to the president at Washington and Lee University, has announced his retirement effective Dec. 31, 2021.
“It is difficult to imagine W&L without Jim Farrar,” said President William C. Dudley. “Jim grew up on the campus and has held a variety of leadership positions in his long career at Washington and Lee. He has been a trusted friend and advisor to me since I arrived in 2017. His devotion to the university, tireless work ethic, and close relationships with faculty and staff across campus and alumni across the country embody the spirit of our community. His expertise, institutional memory, grace, and humor will be missed by all of us who have had the privilege to work with him.”
Farrar, a 1974 graduate of W&L, returned to Lexington in 1986 as the university’s assistant alumni director. He became director of alumni programs and executive secretary of the W&L alumni association in 1990. He served in that position until being named secretary of the university and associate director of development in 1999, managing the operations of the Board of Trustees and serving as a member of the university’s major gift fundraising team.
In 2002, Farrar relinquished his fundraising responsibilities to become senior assistant to acting president Laurent C. Boetsch ’69 while continuing his duties as secretary of the university. He has since served under four rectors and five presidents and was named senior advisor to President Dudley in 2018. A member of the football and lacrosse teams as a student, Farrar was inducted into the W&L Athletics Hall of Fame in 2006, and now serves as a member of the Athletics Hall of Fame Selection Committee. He also serves as chair of W&L’s Community Grants Committee and represents W&L on the Lexington Police Department Foundation Advisory Board.
After graduating from W&L, he served as a teacher, coach, and director of admissions at The Episcopal High School in Alexandria, Virginia, from 1974-1986.
Outside of W&L, Farrar has been active in the local community, having served as vestry member and senior warden of Grace Episcopal Church; member of SunTrust Bank’s Augusta/Rockbridge Advisory Board; coach and board member of Lexington Lacrosse; member of the board of directors of Lexington Golf and Country Club; member of the Rockbridge County Unit of the American Cancer Society; and volunteer youth coach in the Rockbridge Area Recreation Organization.
“It has been a privilege to serve Washington and Lee University for these past 35 years, and I have enjoyed every minute,” said Farrar. “I have been fortunate enough to work with extraordinarily dedicated men and women whose shared mission has been to help W&L maintain its position as one of this country’s great institutions of higher education. While I look forward to new opportunities, I will miss the daily camaraderie with my colleagues and my interactions with students, faculty, staff, and alumni. Kitty and I will remain in Lexington and look forward to supporting the university in any way we can.”