Dear Students, Faculty, and Staff, 

I am writing to share that after nearly three decades of exemplary service to her alma mater, Leslie Muhlfelder ‘81, General Counsel and Vice President of Human Resources, has announced that she will retire from her position on June 30, 2023.

Leslie Muhlfelder '81, general counsel and vice president of human resources

Leslie Muhlfelder ’81, General Counsel and Vice President of Human Resources.

Leslie’s leadership has provided steady and steadfast guidance to the College since she was appointed in 1995 by the Board of Trustees as the College’s first General Counsel. She served with distinction under four Lafayette presidents and four Board Chairs of the College. Our Lafayette community is better for her tireless commitment to the College, her unwavering focus on providing our students with an exceptional education, and the friendships she has maintained with generations of trustees, faculty, staff, and students.

Before joining Lafayette’s administration and faculty in 1995, Leslie served as Associate University Counsel at Temple University. Prior to working at Temple, she began her legal career as a litigator in private practice in Philadelphia. She earned her J.D. from Georgetown University, where she served as a member of the Georgetown law review, and her A.B. in Economics from Lafayette, where she was awarded the Gilbert Prize in English.

During her time at the College, Leslie has been relied on to lead countless committees and initiatives, and has lectured on legal issues facing colleges and universities. Over the years, Leslie, who is a teacher at heart, has also shared her passion for education by teaching a popular course in Lafayette’s Government and Law Department entitled “Race and Gender in the American Legal System.”

In addition, the Human Resources team that Leslie has led throughout the years reflects her unwavering commitment to supporting our faculty and staff colleagues. She is also well known for advocating on behalf of the Lafayette community on important issues such as health care, tuition remission, and other benefits and programs. 

Leslie’s deep love for the College and her support of our community is apparent to anyone who knows her. Over the years, she and her husband, Richard Freemann, have expressed their commitment to the College’s mission by establishing the Lennertz Prize for Exceptional Teaching and Mentoring, in honor of James E. Lennertz, Leslie’s constitutional law professor at Lafayette, and the Ludwig and Beatrice B. Muhlfelder Prize, awarded each year to a Lafayette student who has made a significant contribution to the field of holocaust studies.

On a personal note, I am grateful for the warm welcome Leslie provided me and my family, as well as for her wise counsel. Please join me in wishing our exceptional colleague and friend all the best.

President Nicole Hurd


Categorized in: Presidential News


  1. Louise Seto Coles says:

    Leslie, congratulations on your retirement and all you have done for Lafayette, including being the best RA possible!!!! It’s going to be strange visiting Lafayette knowing we would likely not run into you. Hope you have great plans for your retirement and that we will still see you at reunions or other!

  2. bradbury dyer says:

    But Leslie, “we hardly knew ye”

  3. Ana Duarte McCarthy says:

    Congratulations Leslie! What a wonderful legacy of accomplishments and leadership, from when we were students and then throughout your professional career as General Counsel and VP of HR, you’ve brought to our alma mater. Wishing you continued success and happiness in this next chapter of your life.

  4. Walter Scott BS'59, H '22, GP '22 and Trustee Emeritus says:

    I remember when Arthur Rothkopf ’55 convinced Leslie to come to Lafayette College. She was a thirty something Energizer bunny who would light up the room with her enthusiasm and smile. After almost thirty years of commuting daily between Philadelphia and Easton on the treacherous Northeast Extension of the PA Turnpike, she still has that infectious smile, inexhaustible energy and unfailing empathy. During her three decades of exemplary service to Lafayette, she has been instrumental in preserving the Lafayette ethos through three subsequent presidents and administrations. She leaves behind a large pair of shoes to fill. I will miss her presence on campus deeply.

  5. Cindy Pursel says:

    Leslie has always gone above and beyond to help out any one she came across. From the bottom of the pile to the top, it didn’t matter who you were or what level you worked at. If you needed help, Leslie was there. She has a “genuine” honest investment in our Lafayette Family. She will definitely leave big shoes to be filled. I wish her and her family a long happy healthy retirement.

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