The Lawrence University Board of Trustees has named Mark Burstein, executive vice president of Princeton University, the college’s 16th president.
Burstein takes office July 1, 2013, succeeding Jill Beck, who is retiring June 30 after nine years as the college’s president. She was appointed the first female president in Lawrence’s 165-year history in 2004.
“I was drawn to Lawrence’s rigorous academic environment, its commitment to providing an individualized learning experience to all students and its unique combination of a strong liberal arts education with a nationally-recognized conservatory of music,” said Burstein.
“Through the dedication of its faculty, Lawrence provides an educational experience that literally changes lives, setting its graduates on a trajectory of success and continued exploration. I’m looking forward to working with colleagues to ensure Lawrence’s tradition of excellence. I am thrilled to be joining an institution with a history of storied presidents, including my two immediate predecessors, Jill Beck and Richard Warch.”
Terry Franke, chair of the Lawrence University Board of Trustees, cited Burstein’s breadth of leadership and deep higher education experience across multiple institutions among the reasons he stood out from more than 100 candidates identified by national search firm Isaacson, Miller, which assisted the college’s own search committee.
“Along with my fellow Trustees, I am delighted to welcome Mark to Lawrence University,” said Franke, a 1968 Lawrence graduate. “Mark brings with him a unique set of experiences in public service, finance, consulting as well as leadership with two of the country’s most prestigious educational institutions. This background positions him to be a great leader and president. We are very impressed by Mark’s collaborative style of leadership, in addition to the depth of his operational and management expertise.
“Mark has an affinity and passion for the academic mission of the liberal arts and embraces the transformative experience for Lawrence students as they prepare for their future,” Franke added. “His liberal arts experience at Vassar and now his Board service at Vassar provide him a unique perspective on the liberal arts. We have every confidence that Mark will lead Lawrence to future greatness, building on the momentum and innovation of President Jill Beck.”
Dale Schuh, who served as chair of a 15-person committee consisting of trustees, faculty members, representatives of the student body, alumni and administrative staff that conducted an extensive national search, said Burstein was the unanimous recommendation of the search committee.
“Mark has a distinctive combination of talents and experience that jumped out immediately from the candidate pool,” said Schuh, a 1970 Lawrence graduate. “He understands the liberal arts and the residential college experience plus brings broad experience in operations, finance and strategic institutional planning to the table. He’s smart, engaging, thoughtful, respectful, articulate and self-assured without being arrogant. I’m confident we have found an exceptional leader for Lawrence.”
Lawrence University, "Lawrence University Names Princeton University EVP the College’s 16th President" (2012). Press Releases. Paper 425.