After forty years of directing Sigma Tau Delta, William C. Johnson will retire June 30, 2022. “There comes a time when it’s best to move on. There are so many books yet to read, plays to see, and concerts to hear, and like Andrew Marvell, ‘at my back I always hear / time’s winged chariot hurrying near.'”
During his time at the helm Johnson was responsible for major Society revisions. Biannual conventions transformed to annual; a small handful of scholarships grew to a still-expanding abundance of awards, internships, and scholarships. International expansion took Sigma Tau Delta into other countries, an annual fiction journal has expanded to two publications, and an organization of less than 200 chapters when he started, now numbers over 1,000, making it the second largest honor society in the Association of College Honor Societies—of which Johnson served as President.
Johnson recently noted that behind the scenes he has always advocated for, and attempted to develop, a sense of inclusion, expanding the Sigma Tau Delta emphasis to two-year college students and faculty when he created Sigma Kappa Delta, and especially when he formed National English Honor Society (NEHS) for high school students and faculty. In a recent interview Johnson noted that “People don’t just turn to English as a field when they get to their junior year in college; love of language, literature, and writing starts much, much earlier—hence our efforts to support our discipline among these other audiences.”
A search is underway to locate the next Executive Director. Interested persons may view the full position description and application directions at Northern Illinois University’s Employment site. Applications for the position will be open through June 6, 2022.