Webster University’s Board of Trustees announced today the purchase of a university residence located at 102 Mason Ave. in Webster Groves to be used by the university president and family. The 4-bedroom, 3 1/2-bath home has 3,430 sq. ft. and is located in the historic Webster Park area within walking distance to the university.
“We have been considering providing the most efficient location for a university residence to be used by the president since 2008,” said Brenda Newberry, Board Chair. “This location seems ideal and met our criteria of being close to the university and integral to the community.”
Because of the extensive networking expected of a university president, it is standard practice for universities to provide either a university home or a housing allowance as part of a president’s compensation. The University’s president and family is expected to reside at and host events for community members, local, national and international dignitaries, trustees, faculty, staff, students, alumni, donors and other constituents at the university’s home. The proximity to the university will allow for parking on campus during presidential home events with minimal impact on neighbors.
“By providing a university residence, we will be able to forgo the housing allowance,” said Newberry. “In the long-run, this will provide cost savings and provide a valuable asset to the university.”
The property was purchased for $935,000 and will undergo renovation to ensure accessibility for those in wheelchairs. Renovations have been approved by the Webster Groves Architectural Review Board and will begin immediately.
It is expected that Dr. Elizabeth (Beth) Stroble, president of Webster University, and her family will occupy the house in March. Dr. Stroble will be the first Webster University president in forty years to live in Webster Groves.
“We are focused on providing the infrastructure to enable administrative and academic excellence,” said Ed Glotzbach, chair of the Board’s Building and Infrastructure Committee. “This is one more important step in the evolution of the University’s master plan.”