UW President Tom Buchanan announced Thursday that he will retire as president at the end of summer 2013.  The 61-year-old made the announcement during his annual “State of the University” speech, where he noted that UW has largely achieved the “long list of things that I believed we needed to accomplish to move to the next level” when he became president in 2005.

Buchanan noted that exactly 125 years ago -- on Sept. 6, 1887 -- UW opened its doors to its first class of students.

Governor Matt Mead said Buchanan has left his mark on UW and the state, adding

as alumni, my wife Carol and I are proud supporters of the University of Wyoming. We appreciate Dr. Buchanan’s efforts to shape and enhance the university and build on its stature within Wyoming and across the globe.”

UW Board of Trustees President Dave Bostrom of Worland said the board accepted Buchanan’s retirement with regret, as the president has provided exemplary leadership and led the university with distinction.

Before becoming UW’s 23rd president in 2005, Buchanan served in various capacities at UW during a 35-year career. A native of New York, he attended the State University of New York at Cortland, where he graduated with his undergraduate degree in 1973. He earned his Master’s of Science degree from UW in 1975 and a Ph.D. from the Institute for Environmental Studies at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign in 1979.

After completing his doctorate, Buchanan returned to Wyoming as an assistant professor in the Department of Geography at UW. Over the next 30 years, he rose through the faculty ranks to full professor, and has held various administrative positions including department head, associate dean of the College of Arts and Sciences, and provost and vice president for academic affairs. He became president July 1, 2005.

Bostrom said efforts will begin soon to find Buchanan’s replacement