Greg Redlin, who has filled the position for the past seven years, is stepping down from the role with an unofficial final date scheduled for June 30.
He will return to his home state of South Dakota to pursue a graduate degree in English in hopes of writing "the next great American novel" and begin teaching English courses.
"This is not really a retirement but a pursuit of an encore career," said Redlin.
Redline was drawn to DSU by retiring president Dr. John Hilpert who convinced him to join the Statesmen in November of 2006.
The two were previously colleagues for five years at the University of South Dakota.
He stressed that his decision to move on from DSU was unrelated to Hilpert's retirement and that the time was right to follow other interests.
During his tenure, Redline and his wife of 29 years, RoAnn, have grown fond of the campus and life in the South.
"We've met so many wonderful people in the university community, the downtown community, the IHL Board and colleagues and professionals from different universities," said Redlin.
"I've made a lot of great friends in the South that I will forever cherish."
He's also had the opportunity to connect with the student body through current coursework he's using in preparation of his next degree.
"It's a humbling experience being in classes here," said Redlin. "It makes you feel like the old guy in the room.
"People think that I should know everything because I'm 64 and bald, but really, the playing field is the same for everyone."
The avid runner and swimmer said he would also miss having access to DSU's Olympic size pool at the aquatic center.
For a man who studies literature and history, perhaps Redlin summarized his time in Cleveland best by saying; "I leave with an appreciation for the culinary delights of the South, for it's beautiful accent and wonderful people.
"The day we finally leave and head north, we will have mixed emotions."
Redlin said he hopes a replacement for his position would be determined in May so he could help during the transition period.
He believes a candidate will be found soon but said he'll stick around until LaForge feels confident the right person for the job is found.