Presidents of the College




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Creation Date

late 1970s


The year 2010 marks the happy coincidence of the 150th anniversary of the College and the 35th year it has been served by President Leon Botstein. In 1975, at the age of 27, President Botstein accepted the same challenge faced by most of his predecessors: to lead a small college with a strong academic record, but with fragile financial resources. Like his predecessors, he is an educational innovator with both the vision and practicality to put his ideas into effect. He has been an intuitive administrator and has taken care to cultivate and work with talented people both on the board of trustees and on the faculty and administration of the College. He has overseen the construction of bold new buildings, chief among which are the Olin Humanities building, the Stevenson Gymnasium, the Stevenson Library, several dormitories, the Milton and Sally Avery Arts Center, the Bertelsmann Campus Center, the Richard B. Fisher Center for the Performing Arts, and the Gabrielle H. Reem and Herbert J. Kayden Center for Science and Computation; and he has also expanded the Bard name to an array of innovative graduate programs, early colleges, and international institutions. President Botstein also maintains an active conducting schedule as the principal conductor of the Bard Conservatory Orchestra and the American Symphony Orchestra, and pursues his commitment to teaching, which he exercises annually in First Year Seminar.



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