The President of the Harvard Alumni Association announced the results of the annual election of new members of the Harvard Board of Overseers and the HAA Elected Directors. The results were released at the annual meeting of the association following the University’s 351st Commencement. The five newly elected Overseers, in order of their finish, are: Frances D. Fergusson, 18,542; William F. Lee, 16,738; Richard I. Melvoin, 16,555; Jaime Sepulveda, 16,238; and Penny Pritzker, 16,183. The candidate who received the sixth-highest number of votes, 14,422.
In 2002, there were nine candidates, eight nominated by the Harvard Alumni Association, as prescribed by the election rules, and one nominated by certificates from Harvard degree-holders. There were 32,556 alumni and alumnae who cast ballots in the election for a 15.8 percent rate of participation among eligible voters.
The primary function of the Board of Overseers is to encourage the University to maintain the highest attainable standards as a place of learning. Overseers carry out this mission by visiting faculties, departments, and other important programs throughout the University so that they can inform themselves about the quality of teaching, research, and administration and then identify problems and offer advice to faculties and University officials.
The six newly elected HAA Directors, in order of their finish, are: Joan Z. Lonergan, 20,782; Melita M. Garza, 19,302; Walter K. Clair, 18,946; Stephen R. Wong, 17,702; Eleanor Greenberg White, 17,592; and Peter A. Carfagna, 15,824. The candidate who received the seventh-highest number of votes, 14,388.
There were nine candidates nominated by the Harvard Alumni Association; six were elected for three-year terms. There were 31,855 alumni/ae who voted in the election for a 15 percent rate of participation.
Founded in 1840, the purpose of the HAA remains “the promotion of the welfare of Harvard University and the establishment of a mutually beneficial relationship between Harvard and its alumni.” Among the HAA’s responsibilities are class and reunion events, continuing education programs, alumni relations with undergraduates, recent graduates and the graduate school alumni organizations, coordination among Harvard Clubs, and the nomination of Overseers and Elected Directors. The Alumni Association is guided by a board of elected and appointed directors who meet three times a year. Most of the board’s work is accomplished through committees.