A Tribute to Gbemi Disu and John Crist

A Tribute to Gbemi Disu and John Crist

In February 2021, the Korea campus of George Mason University said goodbye to two of the architects—a founding mother and father—of Mason Korea.

Chief Business Officer Gbemi Disu’s last day at Mason Korea was February 1. Disu was on campus for its opening in 2014. After helping to get Mason Korea off to a strong start in its first years, Disu went back to her work at George Mason University in Fairfax. However, she returned to Mason Korea in 2018 to become its CBO. Her influence is felt in the organization and décor of our building, the many terrific people she has hired and supervised over the years, her highly effective external work with our government and community partners and with embassies in Korea, with all the policies and systems she has helped to put in place at Mason Korea, with our staff development program, and in the campus’s solid fiscal management.

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Associate Dean for Academic and Faculty Affairs John Crist’s last day on campus was February 19.  Crist similarly exercised an important shaping force at Mason Korea. He was instrumental in helping to develop the office of academic affairs in its current form. That office continues to serve Mason Korea well today. Crist did it all, while also overseeing student affairs until a separate office under separate direction was set up a couple of years later. Crist put into place many student policies and processes. He worked tirelessly to facilitate the relationship and communication between academic offices and departments in Virginia and Korea. Most of all, Crist is responsible for hiring and mentoring so many of our faculty, the core of this enterprise.  We heard last December some of the gratitude those faculty felt to Crist.

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We are deeply grateful to these two dedicated Mason Korea leaders. There is a saying that “we stand upon the shoulders of giants.” Chief Business Officer Disu and Associate Dean for Academic and Faculty Affairs Crist are those giants. It is sad to see them go. But we are happy knowing that their legacy at Mason Korea will remain. It is in our DNA. We wish to thank them again and wish them all the best.  Cheers and Bon Voyage!

To see more photos of the farewell event, please visit https://bit.ly/2OR2zro.