This morning the college announced the appointment of a new Chancellor. Following Sandra Day O'Connor's retirement as Chancellor in February, former Secretary of Defense, Robert Gates will take over the position. Gates '65 is part of a long line of distinguished Chancellors, including O'Conner, Margaret Thatcher and Henry Kissinger.
Gates is a graduate of the college and expressed enthusiasm about accepting the position. While a student at the college, Gates was an active member of Alpha Phi Omega and a history major. Upon graduation, Gates received the Algernon Sydney Sullivan Award, which is given on the basis of heart, mind, and helpfulness to others. In 2000, he received the Alumni Medalion.
In his professional career, Gates was employed by the Central Intelligence Agency for 27 years as an intelligence agent and from 1991-1993, Gates served as the agency's director. Gates has received the National Security Medal, the Presidential Citizen's Medal, the National Intelligence Distinguished Service Medal and the Distinguished Intelligence Medal. In 2006, Gates became the the 22nd Defense Secretary and served in this post until his retirement this past June when President Obama presented him with the Presidential Medal of Freedom.
The position of Chancellor has a long history at the college, beginning with the appointment of Chancellor by King William III and Queen Mary II. Typically it was awarded to the Archbishop of Canterbury or the Bishop of London until after the Revolutionary War when George Washington was awarded the honor. The position of Chancellor is honorary post lasting seven years, during this time, the Chancellor is invited to participate in major events and ceremonies on campus. We look forward to welcoming Robert Gates as our new Chancellor.