About BW

Office of the President

President Robert C. Helmer

Robert Helmer HeadshotPh.D., Marquette University
J.D., University of Toledo

The ninth president of Baldwin Wallace University, Dr. Helmer has established himself as a dynamic leader in higher education with demonstrated strengths in curriculum development, enrollment, campus life, fundraising and facility development. In his tenure at BW, Dr. Helmer led the formation of the BW Vision 2020 Strategic Plan which sets a roadmap for institutional strength and purpose in the coming decade, oversaw the establishment new academic programs and helped to secure the largest single gift in BW history.

Dr. Helmer provides leadership and expertise to a number of national, state and local organizations through board membership including service as a trustee for both the Higher Learning Commission (HLC) and the Council of Independent Colleges (CIC). At the state level, he sits on the boards of the Association of Independent Colleges and Universities of Ohio (AICUO) and The Ohio Foundation of Independent Colleges (OFIC). In Northeast Ohio, Dr. Helmer's board service includes The United Way of Greater Cleveland, Southwest General Hospital and Saint Joseph Academy. He is a 2015 graduate of Leadership Cleveland.

Before arriving at BW on July 1, 2012, Dr. Helmer served nine years as president of Lourdes University in Sylvania, Ohio, where he led the creation of new academic programs, more than doubled student enrollment, established an intercollegiate athletics program and expanded the campus physical plant to include new residence halls and a student center.

A graduate of the University of Notre Dame and The Catholic University of Louvain in Belgium, Dr. Helmer received his Ph.D. from Marquette University and his J.D. from the University of Toledo. His scholarly interests are in early Christian origins and apocalyptic literature.

An active and vocal advocate for student success, Dr. Helmer often can be seen at campus athletic events, academic programs and performances; he also engages with the BW community via Twitter. Follow President Helmer on Twitter at @BWPres.

Campus Leadership