Presidential Inauguration, Patricia H. Draves, PHD, 18th President of Graceland University


Graceland University requests the honor of your presence at the inauguration of Patricia H. Draves, PhD as the eighteenth president of the university.

Friday, October 13, 2017

Inauguration Ceremony at 10 a.m.

Shaw Family Auditorium
Shaw Center
1 University Place
Lamoni, IA 50140

Reception immediately following in
Shaw Lobby, Shaw Center

Be a part of history as we celebrate the inauguration of Graceland's 18th president, Patricia H. Draves, PhD. A week of events leading up to the ceremony will unite the Graceland family, bringing alumni, students, faculty special guests, and the Lamoni community together to commemorate the start of an exciting new chapter for our university.

Several of the events including the inauguration will be live-streamed for those unable to attend and will be available on demand for later viewing.



Noon | Independence, Missouri
The Carmichael Auditorium (Program)
Independence Campus Atrium (Reception)

Sharing the Graceland Journey Together: A Program and Reception

RSVP Required


8 - 9 p.m. | Lamoni, Iowa
MSC Main Room

Being Together: A Fireside Chat between Students and President Draves
Facilitated by Graceland Student Government


4 - 5 p.m. | Lamoni, Iowa
Carol Hall, Shaw Center

Learning Together: Faculty-led Roundtable
Moderated by Matthew Frizzell, PhD, Seminary Dean, and Timothy Robbins, PhD, Assistant Professor of English


4 - 5 p.m. | Lamoni, Iowa
Carol Hall, Shaw Center

Raising Our Voices Together: Speech, Song and Sound
A collective celebration of the Black Student Union, Graceland University Combined Choirs and the Marching Yellowjackets

Marching Yellowjackets conducted by Melinda Leoce, Visiting Instructor of Percussion and Athletic Bands; Spoken Word presented by Keondrea Richards, Black Student Union President; Graceland University Combined Choirs conducted by Sara Blessing, Director of Choral/Vocal Activities.


10 a.m. | Lamoni, Iowa
Shaw Family Auditorium,
Shaw Center

Inauguration Ceremony

Following Inauguration | Lamoni, Iowa
Shaw Lobby, Shaw Center

Inaugural Reception

RSVP Required

We are honored to welcome distinguished representatives of higher education institutions and other special guests to our inaugural events. If needed, please coordinate obtaining the appropriate regalia with your college or university for participation in the academic procession.


Please RSVP your attendance at inauguration events by October 4, 2017.


Parking is available on a first-come, first-served basis. The North Events parking has the closest access to Shaw Center.

Special Needs

Special accommodations for all inaugural events are available for those who use wheelchairs, have visual or hearing impairments, or have other mobility or health conditions. To make arrangements, contact the Office of the President at 641.784.5112 or

Transportation Service

Golf carts will be available to help guests who need assistance moving between the parking lots and Shaw Center.  

Patricia H. DravesPresident Patricia H. Draves, Ph.D.

A native of Rhode Island, Dr. Draves earned a Bachelor of Arts in Chemistry from Mount Holyoke College and a PhD in Biophysical Chemistry from the University of Illinois, Champaign-Urbana in 1991. She then completed a post-doctoral fellowship at University of Texas at Austin where she began her interest in studying chemotherapy drugs.

In 1993, she joined the faculty at the University of Central Arkansas as an assistant professor where she was later promoted to associate professor and served as the associate dean of undergraduate studies. In 2002, Draves returned to the liberal arts environment when she moved to Monmouth College to begin a new biochemistry program.

Draves joined the University of Mount Union in 2006 as vice president for academic affairs and dean of the university. Under her leadership, the university achieved significant academic transformation and growth.

She led the establishment of the first graduate education programs at Mount Union with the addition of physician assistant studies, physical therapy and educational leadership. Additionally, she promoted and oversaw the development of three academic centers and 14 new undergraduate programs, including mechanical engineering and civil engineering, the implementation of a successful health and medical sciences initiative, and the enhancement of the performing arts.

During her tenure, Draves steered Mount Union to the adoption of a new general education program, a four-credit based undergraduate curriculum and the development of the first online graduate program. Furthermore, she led efforts to increase experiential learning and establish a campus-wide SCHOLAR day to celebrate students’ research.

Dr. Patricia Draves became the 18th president of Graceland University in June of 2017. She was drawn to Graceland's strong mission and values, inclusive community and deep commitment to preparing leaders to make positive change in the world.

Draves has been married to her husband, Jeffrey Draves for 28 years. Dr. Jeff Draves, a physical, computational and environmental chemist, serves as professor of chemistry in Graceland’s Division of Science and Mathematics. They have twin boys, William and Benjamin, who are both university students.

The Power of Together, Homecoming Oct. 13-15

This single slogan reflects perfectly on the journey Graceland University has taken the past 122 years and points to the underlying formula for success in the glorious years ahead.  The Power of Together is also the mantra for Homecoming 2017 and it will take that level of team effort to pull off the many great things we have planned for you.  

Honor Class reunions are planned for graduates and friends of the classes of 1957, 1967, 1977, 1982, 1987, 1992, 1997, and 2007.  There will be a special luncheon to celebrate the 50-year anniversary of the start of the men’s volleyball program. Dr. Rod Schall will be the guest of honor and all alumni of the men's volleyball program are invited.  Did you happen to meet a spouse at Graceland? That’s great because this year we are inviting all couples who have that in common to come back for a special recommitment ceremony.  Football, soccer and volleyball teams will be in action and the Homecoming play is always well worth the price of admission.

View the Homecoming schedule to find out more.

Where to Eat and Stay ►

Let us help you plan your visit to Lamoni.


Directions and Maps ►

Located between Des Moines, IA and Kansas City, MO, Graceland University is situated on "the Hill" in the quaint town of Lamoni, IA.


Contact ►

Office of the President
Office: 641.784.5112