Richard Osborn Elected President of the Council for American Private Education

By Mike Mennard on November 14, 2007

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Pacific Union College’s president, Richard Osborn, has been elected President of the Council for American Private Education (CAPE). One in four of the nation's schools is a private school, translating into 27,000 schools and nearly 6 million students; and CAPE represents roughly 80% of those schools.

As a liaison between America’s private schools and Capitol Hill, Richard Osborn will represent an alliance of diverse educational programs, including the U.S. Catholic Conference, the National Catholic Education, the American Montessori Society, the Waldorf Schools of America, the National Association of Independent Schools, the Lutheran Church-Missouri Synod, the Evangelical Lutheran Church, the Southern Baptist Church, the Christian Schools International, and the Association of Christian Schools.

Before coming to Pacific Union College, Osborn lived near Washington, D.C. and served as the Vice President for Education of the North American Division of Seventh-day Adventists. Working as the head of education for the Adventist Church, he became active with CAPE and, as a result, with politicians. One wall in his office is filled with photos, over the years, he has gathered of American presidents, senators, and representatives, as he’s taken a more and more active role in championing private schools.

Most recently, he served as the treasurer for the Council for American Private Education. Now, as the council’s president, his role as liaison will increase. Just last week, in his first return to Capitol Hill since being elected president of CAPE, he met with Rod Paige, U.S. Secretary of Education. Osborn described the meeting as “delightful.”

According to Joseph McTighe, executive director of CAPE, “Dr. Osborn’s range of experience certainly qualifies him for this effort. But more than that, his passion for education is infectious, well-reasoned, and persuasive. He was, hands down, the best choice for this post.”

Osborn doesn’t believe his role in CAPE will in any way infringe on his role as Pacific Union College’s president. Rather, he believes his efforts on behalf of all private education—and the subsequent goodwill created—will certainly benefit Pacific Union College.

The Council for American Private Education was founded in 1971 to provide a coherent voice for private schools in the educational community. Pacific Union College is a four-year comprehensive college located in Angwin, Calif., For eight straight years, Pacific Union College has been the top-ranked comprehensive college in California, according to U.S. News & World Report.