The Ivy Coach Daily

January 21, 2022

UPenn Nominates New President

UPenn’s Board of Trustees will be voting on the nomination of the university’s new leader in just a couple of weeks (photo credit: Bryan Y.W. Shin).

The University of Pennsylvania has named a successor to outgoing President Amy Gutmann. Gutmann had announced last year her intention to step down from the top post at UPenn, a post she’s held since 2004. And who will likely be the university’s new leader, the ninth president in university history? That would be nominee M. Elizabeth Magill, the current Executive Vice President and Provost of the University of Virginia. The Executive Committee of UPenn’s Board of Trustees has put forward Magill’s name as the nominee to succeed Gutmann, though her nomination awaits confirmation through a vote by the full Board of Trustees on March 4th.

As the university announces in a Penn Today press release entitled “M. Elizabeth Magill nominated to become President of the University of Pennsylvania,” “Magill is a distinguished scholar and teacher of administrative and constitutional law. A fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences and a member of the American Law Institute, she has been a visiting professor at Harvard Law School, held a fellowship in the Law and Public Affairs Program at Princeton University, and was the Thomas Jefferson visiting professor at Downing College, Cambridge University. Her scholarly articles have been published in leading law reviews, and she has won several awards for her scholarly contributions.” The former law clerk for the late Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg attended college at Yale and received her law degree from UVA. She has been the Executive Vice President and Provost at UVA since 2019 and she previously served as Dean of Stanford Law School.

Prior to 1993, only men led the University of Pennsylvania. From William Smith, who led UPenn for a quarter of the eighteenth century to Francis Sheldon Hackney, who led UPenn from 1981 to 1993, it was men, men, men. And, since then, it’s been all women at the helm. From Interim President Claire Muriel Mintzer Fagin who led UPenn from 1993-1994 to Judith Rodin who led UPenn from 1993-2004, to Amy Gutmann who has led UPenn since 2004, to this week’s nominee to succeed Gutmann, M. Elizabeth Magill, the university founded by Ben Franklin definitely has a new streak going.

Congratulations to M. Elizabeth Magill on her nomination to the UPenn presidency!

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