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University of Toledo President Dr. Greg Postel Talks Experience, Looking to the Future

The mark of a great institution is the people behind it. The University of Toledo has many professors, administrators, coaches and staff working to propel the university forward, but all of those working at the University are working together with one man: President Greg Postel. 

Dr. Postel became president of the University of Toledo in 2020, a tumultuous time for higher education due to the COVID-19 pandemic. However, despite the challenges of the pandemic, with his expansive resume and life experience, Postel came to the position prepared.

“I had never been to Toledo,” Dr. Postel said. “What really interested me in the job was the similarities with what I had been doing before. They wanted someone who had been a President before. With COVID, so much time had to be spent on (the pandemic) that they didn’t want somebody who was learning on the job. I spent a huge part of my life working with hospitals and medical practices and had that background, so I think the combination of (that) seemed like a good fit.”

A man on a medical mission

Dr. Postel grew up in Canton with his parents as an only child; his father was a mechanical engineer. From a young age, Dr. Postel was sold on the path of higher education, learning from his father’s doctor about the College of Wooster. After attending Hoover High School in North Canton, Dr. Postel, inspired by his own pediatrician, Dr. Arnold, and went into medicine. 

“I positively worshiped (him),” Dr. Postel explains. “I wanted to be like him. I changed my mind over the years, several times, about (what sub-field of medicine I would pursue), but I never changed my mind about going to medical school. I probably decided when I was six years old that I was going to go to medical school, and I never thought about (pursuing) anything else.”

Though he initially thought of being a pediatrician like Dr. Arnold, Dr. Postel decided to go into radiology because he was always interested in the brain and spent time working with a neuroradiologist. There was a well-known relationship between the College of Wooster and Case Western Reserve’s medical program, which led Dr. Postel to pursue his medical degree at Case following his undergraduate graduation. 

Just down the street from the Case Western medical campus is the Cleveland Clinic, where Dr. Postel did his residency. He then completed a year-long fellowship at the Mayo Clinic in Minnesota.

Putting education to work

Dr. Postel started his career in 1994 at the University of Louisville, where he became a faculty member, holding several different positions over the course of two decades. He was put in charge of the residency program for radiology, then became the section chief for neuroradiology. After three years, he landed the position of department chair for radiology, holding that title from 1997 until 2015. 

He used his experience to form a multispecialty medical practice called the University of Louisville physicians with over 900 doctors with Dr. Postel as acting CEO. After a promotion to Vice President for Health Affairs at the University of Louisville, Dr. Postel became President of the University from 2016 to 2018.

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After a two year sabbatical, working as a senior partner at Korn Ferry doing consulting for higher education, he was called back to higher education as the president of the University of Toledo.

Doing Better in Toledo

Dr. Postel felt the switch to UT was an easy transition. His medical and higher education backgrounds gave him understanding and experience other candidates did not have. 

“Almost 60% of the budget of the university is clinical care,” Dr. Postel said. “I think the fact that I spent most of my academic career working with  medical schools and medical practices made that a perfect fit. I try not to be (biased, though). We’ve got all kinds of other schools (within the University of Toledo) that we’ve got to take care of, too.”

On top of his duties with UT, Dr. Postel serves on the board for the Toledo Museum of Art, and is very involved with his church, St. Joseph’s Parish. Additionally, he has two 13 year old twin boys that he spends time with, watching their activities and “playing Uber driver”, he says. 

As for his University family? Dr. Postel knows all universities are struggling these days, but is optimistic. The school is working on increasing enrollment, uplifting students and continuing to connect with the community. He emphasizes the fact that UT works to give its students not only classroom knowledge, but personal development and real world experience, too.

“The university has so much potential,” Dr. Postel said. “The mission is wonderful; the hospital is doing well; our research programs are doing well; and we have students who are graduating and going off and doing wonderful things. What’s not to be excited about?”

Dr. Postel encourages anyone who is interested in UT to tour campus and check out the programs online at utoledo.edu.


Get to know Dr. Postel: 

What was your first job?

When I was in high school my dad hired me for the summer to work with a crew of people to clean out a giant hangar where they used to build blimps.

Are there any charities you support that are close to your heart?

The main one is our church, St. Joseph Catholic Church. The Toledo Museum of Art, too.

If you could describe yourself in one word or phrase, what would it be?


What is the last book that you read or one that you’re reading right now?

The Great Upheaval, talking about what a mess higher education is in the United States.

What music are you listening to right now?

Several things: popular music, because I have kids, but I love jazz and classical. 

What is your favorite movie or television show?

We watch a lot of college sports on television. That crowds out everything else.

What are the qualities that you value in those that you work with professionally and those that you associate with personally?

I like people to be dependable, honest, hardworking and loyal.

If you could give your childhood self any piece of advice or encouragement, what would you say?

Don’t worry so much about change because a lot of times change turns out to be a good thing.

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