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Update from the Presidential Search Committee

Dear Members of the Yale Community,

It has been a busy month since President Salovey announced he would be returning to the faculty full time at the end of the academic year, and the board of trustees began the process of searching for the next president of Yale.

In that time, we have formed a search committee. I chair the committee with vice chairs Catharine Bond Hill, ’85 Ph.D., and William Kennard, ’81 J.D. The committee includes five other trustees: Ann Miura-Ko, ’98 B.S.; Joshua Steiner, ’87 B.A.; David Sze, ’88 B.A.; Marta Tellado, ’02 Ph.D.; and Michael Warren, ’90 B.A.

Next, we solicited community input and nominations for faculty members to serve on the committee, and last week, we announced four faculty members. We are deeply grateful to these four faculty members for being willing to serve on the search committee: Steven Berry, David Swensen Professor of Economics, Professor of Management, and Faculty Director of the Tobin Center for Economic Policy; Daniel Colón-Ramos, Dorys McConnell Duberg Professor of Neuroscience and Cell Biology and Director of the Wu Tsai Institute’s Center for Neurodevelopment and Plasticity; Jacqueline Goldsby, Thomas E. Donnelley Professor of African American Studies and of English and Professor of American Studies; and Anjelica Gonzalez, Professor of Biomedical Engineering, Faculty Director of Tsai CITY, and Head of Davenport College. In addition, we have hired Spencer Stuart, a global search firm, to support our process.

From the beginning of this search, we shared a commitment to seek input actively from the Yale community and engage with students, faculty, staff, and alumni. Throughout this time, we have heard from many of you by way of emails ( and webform entries. We encourage you to continue submitting input using these tools.

Last week we began the process of meeting with community members to collect input in a more personal manner. We heard from hundreds of students, faculty, and staff through eight open forums, a series of smaller group meetings, and one-on-one meetings on campus. We are grateful to all those who have taken the time so far to share their perspectives with us.

In the past month, the other trustees and I have discussed the importance of having additional methods of receiving ideas and recommendations from the community. For that reason, we are creating one more listening session for staff and will soon provide listening sessions for alumni.

In addition, we are forming a Student Advisory Council to continue the work of soliciting and receiving peer-to-peer feedback on the key questions we asked during the open forums:

  • What are your aspirations for Yale as a continuing leader in higher education in the world?
  • What are the most important attributes of the next president of Yale?
  • What do you think are the most important areas of focus for Yale to impact the critical challenges facing the world today?

The Student Advisory Council will share the information it gathers with members of the search committee through meetings and written reports. The student leaders of the Yale College Council, the Graduate and Professional Student Senate, and the Graduate Student Assembly will run a process to identify the students on the Student Advisory Council.

We look forward to keeping in touch with you throughout the search process and are excited about the work ahead of us. You can find the latest information about the search on the presidential search committee website. If you would like to receive updates directly each time there is news about the search, please register to receive information. Thank you for your ongoing engagement, and please continue to write ( and send us your thoughts and suggestions.


Josh Bekenstein, ’80 B.A.
Senior Trustee
Chair, Presidential Search Committee