Takoma Park, MD. (November 2, 2018)—The Washington Adventist University family was saddened to learn of the passing this week of Dr. Colin Standish, President of Columbia Union College (CUC) from 1974-78.
Known for his experience as a college president, his strong spiritual emphasis, and his unique vision of the role of Christian higher education, Dr. Standish joined the CUC faculty in 1973 as chair of the psychology department. He became Academic Dean in March, 1974, and was named President the following month.
Born in Newcastle, New South Wales, Australia, Dr. Standish held Bachelor’s, Master’s, and Doctor of Philosophy degrees in psychology, as well as a Master’s degree in education from the University of Sydney. He taught in Australian primary schools, took a teaching fellowship at the University of Sydney, served on the faculty of Avondale College, ultimately chairing the education department. He also served as President of West Indies College in Jamaica after a stint as Academic Dean there.
His twin brother, Russell Standish, M.D., with whom he co-authored dozens of books, will killed in an automobile accident in Australia in 2008.
Dr. Standish accepted a call to be president of Weimar College in northern California in 1978, after a proposal to move CUC out of Takoma Park failed to gain traction. In 1983, he became the founding President of the Hartland Institute of Health and Education ans served there until 2011.
While differing with many on campus about the direction of CUC during his tenure, Dr. Standish remained friends even with those who strongly opposed him, and called his five years at CUC “some of the most treasured years of my life.”
“The Washington Adventist University leaning community mourns the death of this pioneer of Seventh-day Adventist Christian higher-education,” said President Dr. Weymouth Spence. “We offer prayers of support and comfort for his dear wife, Cheryl, and the family, and the consolation of warm memories and high regard for his legacy here at the Gateway to Service.”