MOORHEAD - Concordia College President Pamela Jolicoeur died today after suffering a stroke early this morning at her home, according to an email sent out by Ron Offutt, chair of the college's board of regents.
"It is with deep regret and profound sadness that I share the news that President Jolicoeur passed away this afternoon," Offutt wrote in the email.
"This is a devastating day for all of us in the Concordia community," Offut said.
Jolicoeur was 65.
Details about the funeral service will be shared when arrangements have been made.
Jolicoeur had been hospitalized after the stroke in serious condition.
Offutt asked Concordia College's community to keep her family in their prayers.
In 2004, Moorhead's Concordia College selected Jolicoeur as its 10th president. She took over for Paul Dovre, who was acting as interim president at the time.
Jolicoeur's tenure at Concordia has had a tremendous impact on the school and the larger Fargo-Moorhead community, said Roger Gilbertson, a former member of the Concordia College Board of Regents who headed the search committee that helped bring Jolicoeur to Moorhead.
"She's an outstanding president and an outstanding person. She truly is," Gilbertson said.
"I just hope she can recover from this, because she's critically needed by the institution," he added.
Jolicoeur joined California Lutheran University in 1972 as a sociology professor and worked her way up the academic ladder.
She served as chair of CLU's sociology department from 1979 to 1983, assistant dean from 1981 to 1983 and associate dean from 1984 to 1992.
She spent three years as vice president for academic affairs before being named CLU provost in 1996, the school's No. 2 post.
In 2008, Jolicoeur was named chairwoman of the Minnesota Private College Council, Fund and Research Foundation, which represents 17 liberal arts colleges and universities in the state. It raises funds to support operating costs and need-based scholarships.
During her tenure at Concordia, the college began construction and completed the $32 million Knutson Campus Center, the most expansive and priciest construction project in the school's history.