Princeton’s first female president to retire

Sep 22, 2012, 7:29 PM

Associated Press

PRINCETON, N.J. (AP) – Shirley Tilghman, a noted educator and administrator who became the first woman to serve as president of Princeton University, has decided to leave her post at the end of the academic year.

Tilghman, 66, announced her intentions in an email Saturday to students, faculty, staff and alumni. She informed university officials of her plans a day earlier.

“There is a natural rhythm to university presidencies,” Tilghman wrote in her statement to the university community. “With the major priorities accomplished or well on their way to being realized … it is time for Princeton to turn to its 20th president to chart the path for the next decade and beyond.”

Tilghman, who became the Ivy League school’s 19th president in 2001, will leave office in June. She then plans to take a year’s leave before returning to teaching at Princeton. She is considered a leader in the field of molecular biology.

A search committee _ led by Kathryn A. Hall, chairwoman of the university’s Board of Trustees _ will be named to choose Tilghman’s successor. A time frame for its decision has not been determined. The panel will include several board members and four faculty members, as well as student and staff representatives.

“Shirley Tilghman has provided exceptional leadership for Princeton over these past 11 years, building on its distinctive strengths and pioneering important new initiatives in areas ranging from neuroscience, energy research and the arts to internationalization and campus life, while also providing national leadership on a broad range of issues,” Hall said. “We are deeply grateful for her service as president, and we are very pleased that she will remain a member of our faculty.”

A native of Canada, Tilghman came to Princeton in 1986 as a professor and later chaired the university’s Council on Science and Technology, which encourages the teaching of science and technology to students outside the sciences. University officials also honored her with the President’s Award for Distinguished Teaching in 1996.

When Tilghman’s predecessor, Harold T. Shapiro, announced his intentions to step down, she initially was elected by faculty members to serve on the search committee that was to pick his successor. But she was eventually asked to leave the committee so she could be considered for the presidency. She was chosen for the post in May 2001, and assumed office the following month.

During Tilghman’s tenure as president, the school greatly increased the number of students on financial aid and more than doubled the average aid they receive. She also is credited with overseeing the advancement of several major initiatives, including expanding the undergraduate student body, the construction of new performing arts, neuroscience and library facilities and drafting a master plan to chart the future development of the school.

(Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

United States News

FILE - Mega Millions lottery tickets and a wager slip are displayed, Friday, Jan. 6, 2023, in Derry...
Arizona Sports

Drawing nears for $700M Powerball prize, 10th biggest in US

Another huge lottery jackpot will be on the line Saturday for players willing to put up $2 vs. daunting odds of actually winning the prize.
2 days ago
Chinese spy balloon flies above in Charlotte NC, United States on February 04, 2023. The Pentagon a...
Associated Press

US downs suspected Chinese spy balloon off the Carolina coast

The United States on Saturday downed a suspected Chinese spy balloon off the Carolina coast after it traversed sensitive military sites.
2 days ago
A high altitude balloon floats over Billings, Mont., on Wednesday, Feb. 1, 2023. The huge, high-alt...
Associated Press

Chinese balloon soars across US; Blinken scraps Beijing trip

A Chinese balloon sailing across the U.S. drew severe Pentagon accusations and sent excited or alarmed Americans outside with binoculars.
3 days ago
Protesters march Saturday, Jan. 28, 2023, in Memphis, Tenn., over the death of Tyre Nichols, who di...
Associated Press

6th officer fired after beating death of Tyre Nichols

A sixth Memphis officer was fired Friday after an internal police investigation showed he violated multiple department policies in the violent arrest of Tyre Nichols.
3 days ago
(Photo by John Moore/Getty Images)...
Associated Press

Denver Court throws out Wyoming doctor’s pill convictions

A federal appeals court on Friday threw out the convictions of a doctor accused of overprescribing powerful pain medication and ordered a new trial for him.
3 days ago
A hiring sign is displayed at a restaurant in Rolling Meadows, Ill., Monday, Jan. 30, 2023. America...
Associated Press

A surprising burst of US hiring in January: 517,000 jobs

WASHINGTON (AP) — For nearly a year, the Federal Reserve has been on a mission to cool down the job market to help curb the nation’s worst inflation bout in four decades. The job market hasn’t been cooperating. Consider what happened in January: The government said Friday that employers added a sizzling 517,000 jobs last […]
3 days ago

Sponsored Articles

Day & Night Air Conditioning, Heating and Plumbing

Prep the plumbing in your home just in time for the holidays

With the holidays approaching, it's important to know when your home is in need of heating and plumbing updates before more guests start to come around.
(Desert Institute for Spine Care photo)...

Why DISC is world renowned for back and neck pain treatments

Fifty percent of Americans and 90% of people at least 50 years old have some level of degenerative disc disease.
Children’s Cancer Network

Children’s Cancer Network celebrates cancer-fighting superheroes, raises funds during September’s Childhood Cancer Awareness Month

Jace Hyduchak was like most other kids in his kindergarten class: He loved to play basketball, dress up like his favorite superheroes and jump as high as his pint-sized body would take him on his backyard trampoline.
Princeton’s first female president to retire