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April 20, 2022

Bowdoin College president to step down in 2023

Bowdoin College said Tuesday that President Clayton Rose will step down from that role in 2023 after an eight-year tenure that has seen increases in campus building projects, fundraising and student applications.

Courtesy / Bowdoin College
Bowdoin College President Clayton Rose will step down next year.

"I have reached this decision after considerable thought, and it was not taken easily — serving the college is the privilege of my professional life and being a part of the Bowdoin community is a joy,” Rose said in a news release.

“With Bowdoin stronger than it has ever been in virtually every regard and with the clear prospect of life on campus and elsewhere returning to normal in the months ahead as we learn to live with the ups and downs of the virus, the end of the next academic year will be the right time to welcome a new president to the college."

His last day leading the private liberal arts school in Brunswick will be June 30, 2023.

Since 2015, when Rose was named Bowdoin’s 15th president, financial aid has expanded to support more students and to provide greater funding for each student. Applications for admission have risen 40%, with those from first-generation students up 115%, and those from students of color up almost 50%. 

Building projects have included new student residence halls, classroom buildings and athletic facilities, as well as the creation of a complex for the interdisciplinary study of the environment, oceans and the Arctic.

Under Rose's leadership, Bowdoin also launched a $500 million fundraising campaign, and with two years remaining the drive is more than 85% of the way to its goal.

“We wouldn’t be here without Clayton’s vision, steadfast leadership, quiet confidence, and his insightful ability to bring people together for common ends,” said Robert White, chair of the college's board of trustees.

White said trustees and alumni Sydney Asbury and Bertrand Garcia-Moreno will lead a search for Bowdoin’s next president. A full search committee, with representation from the board, faculty and staff, student body, and alumni, will be formed and announced in May.

Originally from San Rafael, Calif., Rose spent the first 20 years of his career in finance, retiring as vice chairman at J.P. Morgan. He earned his undergraduate degree and MBA at the University of Chicago. In 2003, following his business career, he enrolled in the doctoral program in sociology at the University of Pennsylvania to study issues of race in America, earning a master’s degree in 2005 and a Ph.D. in 2007.

Prior to Bowdoin, Rose was a member of the faculty at Harvard Business School.

Rose currently chairs the board of trustees of Howard Hughes Medical Institute, the nation’s largest academic biomedical research organization. He is also a member of the board of directors of Bank of America. He and his wife Julianne have two sons, two daughters-in-law and three grandchildren.

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