Campus & Community

Search for presidential successor begins

3 min read

The Harvard Corporation has announced the start of the search for a successor to President Neil L. Rudenstine, who recently announced his intention to conclude his service at the close of the 2000-01 academic year, after a decade in office.

Under the University charter, a new President is elected by the Corporation, with the counsel and consent of the Board of Overseers. As in the 1990-91 search that culminated in the selection of President Rudenstine, the search committee will consist of the six members of the Corporation other than the President, together with three Overseers.

The search will include broad outreach to solicit advice and nominations from members of the Harvard community and the wider world of higher education. Before and during the academic year that starts in September, it is expected that more than 300,000 letters will be sent to faculty, students, staff, alumni, and others soliciting their views of the University and its future as well as their counsel regarding the search. In addition, the committee plans to meet with a variety of individuals and groups, both within and beyond Harvard, in the months ahead.

“Our hope is to benefit from the perspectives and thoughtful counsel of a very broad cross-section of the University community as we undertake this task of extraordinary importance to Harvard’s future,” said Robert G. Stone Jr., the senior member of the Harvard Corporation and chair of the search committee. “We encourage everyone who wishes to express a view to write to us. Your advice will be a vital element of the process.”

Correspondence regarding the search may be addressed to the Harvard University Presidential Search Committee, Loeb House, 17 Quincy St., Cambridge, MA 02138. The search committee will hold the letters in strict confidence.

The members of the search committee are:

  • Robert G. Stone, Jr., ’45 (’47), chair, Senior Fellow of Harvard College and former Chairman and CEO of the Kirby Corporation;
  • D. Ronald Daniel, MBA ’54, Treasurer of the University and a Director of McKinsey & Company, where he served as Managing Partner from 1976 to 1988;
  • Thomas E. Everhart, AB ’53, Harvard Overseer and President Emeritus of the California Institute of Technology;
  • Sharon Elliott Gagnon, PhD ’72, President of the Harvard Board of Overseers and former President of the Board of Regents of the University of Alaska;
  • Hanna Holborn Gray, PhD ’57, Fellow of Harvard College and Judson Distinguished Service Professor of History at the University of Chicago, where she served as President from 1978 to 1993;
  • Conrad K. Harper, JD ’65, Fellow of Harvard College, Partner at Simpson Thacher & Bartlett, and former Legal Adviser to the U.S. State Department;
  • James R. Houghton, AB ’58, MBA ’62, Fellow of Harvard College and Chairman Emeritus of Corning, Inc., where he served as Chairman and CEO from 1983 to 1996;
  • Richard E. Oldenburg, AB ’54, Harvard Overseer, Honorary Chairman of Sotheby’s North and South America, and Director Emeritus of the Museum of Modern Art; and
  • Herbert S. Winokur Jr., AB ’65 (’64), AM ’65, PhD ’67, Fellow of Harvard College and Chairman and CEO of Capricorn Holdings, Inc.