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U-Mary business school dean, former Bismarck mayor to retire

U-Mary business school dean, former Bismarck mayor to retire

  • Updated

The head of the University of Mary's Gary Tharaldson School of Business is retiring.

John Warford has been dean of the business school since 2014, after serving 12 years as mayor of Bismarck. He is retiring to spend more time with family and at his nearby ranch, as well as to assist at his business, Warford Orthodontics, according to a news release from the school on Monday.

Warford and his wife, Jennifer, moved to Bismarck in 1973 to open their orthodontics business. Warford was elected mayor in 2002 and served three four-year terms before taking over the helm of the business school.

"We feel blessed to count John and Jennifer as close friends and long-time supporters of the university and the mission of the Benedictine Sisters," Monsignor James Shea said in a statement, noting that Jennifer Warford also served on the university's Board of Trustees from 1987-1996. "John's presence on campus as our business dean these past years has been a true blessing and an honor, and our prayers and gratitude certainly accompany him on the road ahead."

(Reach Blair Emerson at 701-250-8251 or


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