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President DiBiaggio Announces Plans To Step Down

President John DiBiaggio

John DiBiaggio announced on September 12 that he will step down from the presidency of Tufts University.

DiBiaggio, 68, has presided over Tufts since 1992. At the request of the Board of Trustees, he will stay on until a successor is named or until June 2002, whichever occurs first.

"I joined Tufts because of its commitment to high-quality teaching, scholarship and research, its global perspective and its dedication to the ethic and practice of public service and active citizenship," DiBiaggio said. "I'm proud to have served at Tufts when the members of our community have made numerous headlines as researchers, educators, business and government leaders, entrepreneurs, change agents and influential policymakers. Tufts is remarkable for having achieved scholarly prominence while maintaining its roots in teaching. Few universities can make that claim."

DiBiaggio, a Detroit native and son of Italian immigrant parents, is credited with strengthening the University's academic and financial position, and building a stronger sense of community among the schools on Tufts' three Massachusetts campuses and its European campus in Talloires, France.

"John has been a good friend and colleague, and an outstanding leader during a period of unprecedented heights for Tufts University," said Nathan Gantcher, chairman of Tufts' Board of Trustees. "Tufts' reputation for being a leading international university has grown significantly during John's presidency, and we are in the best fiscal and operational condition in our history. The quality of our faculty, researchers and staff, and the credentials of our students are at an all-time high."

Gantcher noted Tufts' endowment has nearly tripled, and there are nearly five times the number of endowed chairs since DiBiaggio's arrival. The University has exceeded its original $400 million "Tufts Tomorrow" campaign and is poised to surpass its revised goal of $600 million by 2002. Tufts' undergraduate program is among the most selective in the country--the number of applicants increased by more than 70 percent in just the past five years, while the scores, grades and rank of the incoming freshmen continue to break school records.

In addition, the University's graduate and professional schools in medicine, biomedical sciences, dentistry, nutrition, international relations and veterinary medicine stand alongside the country's most prestigious programs. This year, research undertaken by Tufts and its affiliated hospitals will exceed $120 million.

Tufts' campuses also have, or soon will have, major new multimillion- dollar facilities, ranging from the Jaharis Family Biomedical Nutrition Research Center in Boston and the Bernice Barbour Wildlife Medicine Building in Grafton to Dowling Hall, home of an all-in-one student services center, and the Gantcher Family Sports and Convocation Center, both on the Medford/Somerville campus.

"The most important thing I did in my years as a trustee at Tufts was chair the search committee that brought John here," said Brian O'Connell, who recently retired as a Tufts trustee. "He's fulfilled all our expectations--and far more."

O'Connell added that, thanks to DiBiaggio's sponsorship of Tufts' new College of Citizenship and Public Service, "the very definition of a Tufts education will mean preparation for a lifetime of active citizenship and personal service" to the communities in which our graduates live and work.

DiBiaggio added that he also is "particularly proud" to see the growth of "real collaboration"--in joint academic programs and research--and the sharing of ideas among scholars, researchers and Tufts students on all campuses.

"Universities typically find themselves operating in 'silos,' with each school focused on doing what it does best-- within its own discipline," DiBiaggio said. "Tufts has very low walls from one school to the next, and everyone--students, faculty and staff--benefits. We now have 14 joint degree programs, up from one when I arrived. And each of our schools is participating in University-wide, internationally focused initiatives on aging, children's issues and the environment. As a result, Tufts today is far greater than the sum of its parts."

Gantcher added that, on top of these significant achievements, DiBiaggio also earned high marks for warmth and accessibility. "Faculty, staff, students and their parents often tell us they appreciate his open-door policy," Gantcher added. "He's been a very visible president, always making extra time to talk with students, cheer them on during finals and celebrate their achievements."

Gantcher also said DiBiaggio and his wife, Nancy, have "tirelessly and graciously" served as the University's own First Family--warmly welcoming thousands of Tufts' friends and family and international dignitaries over the years to the president's residence, Gifford House. "They have played a major role in making every visitor, every member of the Tufts family, feel very special about this University--and we are most grateful."

Prior to his appointment at Tufts, DiBiaggio served as president of Michigan State University from 1985 to 1992; president of the University of Connecticut from 1979 to 1985; and vice president for health affairs and executive director of the medical center at the University of Connecticut from 1976 to 1979. In addition to holding many other administrative appointments, he has served as a tenured professor in a number of departments. He holds three degrees and ten honorary degrees.

DiBiaggio has held a lifelong commitment to volunteering and has served on the boards of the American Council on Education, Campus Compact, Golden Key National Honor Society, the American Film Institute and the NCAA Foundation, among others. He is also a member of the Commission on the International Exchange of Scholars and serves as President of the Board of the American Cancer Society Foundation. He is also a director of the Kaman Corporation and of the national American Automobile Association. Gantcher said a search for DiBiaggio's successor will begin immediately.

Highlights from the DiBiaggio Administration

  • The University is in the best financial position in its history. The endowment has tripled from $180 million to nearly $600 million. Fully endowed chairs have quintupled to 24.
  • Tufts exceeded its initial $400 million Tufts Tomorrow campaign and has set a revised goal of $600 million to be reached by 2002. During the campaign Tufts received the biggest gift in its history--$20 million from Trustee Bernard Gordon, H92--for the engineering program.
  • The undergraduate program, and graduate and professional schools, are among the most selective and prestigious in the country. For instance, the number of undergrad applications has risen 85 percent over the past eight years, and students at the Dental School have placed among the top ten dental schools nationwide for the past four years in students' performance on national board exams.
  • Clinical research undertaken by the Medical School and Sackler ranked sixth in the country for its impact.
  • "Active citizenship," long a hallmark of Tufts, is being formalized this fall in the new interdisciplinary programs of the University College of Citizenship and Public Service, which earlier this year received a $10 million gift from graduates Pierre Omidyar, A88, founder of eBay, and his wife, Pam Wesley Omidyar, J89.
  • Tufts now has 14 joint degree programs, including collaborations on University-wide initiatives on aging, children's issues and the environment.
  • Five years ago Tufts more than doubled its financial commitment to address deferred maintenance on a University-wide basis, now an $11 million effort.

Building accomplishments include:

  • In Boston's Health Science campus, the Jaharis Family Center for Biomedical and Nutrition Research;
  • In Grafton at the Veterinary School, six buildings, including the Harringtonn Oncology Program win, a new teaching laboratory, and the Bernice Barbour Wildlife Medicine Building; and
  • In Medford, seven facilities, including Dowling Hall, the Gantcher Family Sports and Convocation Center and the Tisch Library.

 

New Dean US Ambassador to South Korea Tapped to Lead Fletcher School

Stephen W. Bosworth

Tufts announced in july that U.S. ambassador to South Korea, Stephen W. Bosworth, will become Dean of the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy effective February 15.

Ambassador Bosworth replaces John R. Galvin, the former Supreme Allied Commander of NATO in Europe, who recently retired as dean of the Fletcher School. Currently, Joel P. Trachtman, a professor of international law and academic dean, is serving as interim dean.

"Ambassador Bosworth has been working hard to reduce tensions on the Korean peninsula," said President John DiBiaggio. "Indeed, he has played an important role in coordinating the U.S. and South Korean strategies toward North Korea, including the historic summit meeting between the leaders of North and South Korea held in Pyongyang last month."

Bosworth commented on his appointment, "Having worked for more than 30 years in the foreign policy arena, it seems appropriate that my career brings me to the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy. I consider it an honor and privilege to have been entrusted with the leadership of such a respected institution. The many Fletcher graduates with whom I have worked are noteworthy for their passion and vision, their strong intellects and versatility."

Bosworth, 60, is a graduate of Dartmouth College and a former chair of Dartmouth's board of trustees. He has served as the U.S. ambassador to Tunisia and he later held the key position of U.S. ambassador to the Philippines during the last years of the presidency of Ferdinand Marcos. Prior to his appointment in Seoul, Ambassador Bosworth organized and was the first Executive Director of the Korean Peninsula Energy Development Organization (KEDO), a multinational organization supplying two nuclear power plants and annually shipping 500,000 metric tons of heavy fuel oil to North Korea in exchange for the freezing and eventual dismantling of North Korea's nuclear weapons capability.

Ambassador Bosworth's foreign service postings include time in Paris, Madrid and Panama. In Washington, D.C., he has served as director of policy planning, principal deputy assistant secretary of state for inter-American affairs, deputy assistant secretary of state for economic affairs and director of the Office of Fuels and Energy. Starting in 1987, Ambassador Bosworth was president for eight years of the U.S.-Japan Foundation, a private American grant-making institution. During this period he chaired and co-authored several studies on U.S. relations with Asia and served as an advisor to several major companies. He was also an adjunct professor at Columbia University’s School of International and Public Affairs.

Seven join Tufts Boards of Overseers

Tufts recently announced that six new people have joined the Boards of Overseers to assist the president and the Board of Trustees. They are:

Dr. Richard J. Cleveland, A54, Benjamin Andrews Professor of Surgery emeritus at the School of Medicine, to the International Board of Overseers. He also serves as secretary-treasurer of the American Board of Thoracic Surgery and president of the Atlantis Group, an international telemedicine management company.

Jeannie H. Diefenderfer, E84, to the Board of Overseers for Engineering. As the vice president of corporate sourcing for Bell Atlantic, she is accountable for managing a $9 billion buy for Bell Atlantic from Maine to Virginia.

Daniel J. Doherty III, founder and principal of Eastern Development, developer and owner of office and retail properties, to the Board of Overseers for Athletics. Doherty attended Tufts for his freshman and sophomore years and continued his undergraduate education at UMass-Boston. He is a lifetime member of the Jumbo Club.

Elaine Feen Kaufman, J46, to the International Board of Overseers. She is one of the most devoted and generous benefactors of the Tufts European Center in Talloires, France. In addition to her continuing support of the annual operation of the center, Kaufman has endowed the Kaufman Financial Aid Fund for Study Abroad to give more Tufts students the opportunity to study in Talloires. She resides in London.

Edward M. Swan, Jr., A63, to the Board of Overseers for Arts & Sciences. He is the retired vice president of MFS International Advisors in Boston.

Gregory J. Terry, F70, to the Board of Overseers for the Fletcher School. He is the CEO and managing director of Brierley Management Services PTE Limited in Tung Centre, Singapore.

Trustee Judith Vaitukaitis, J62, to the Board of Overseers for the Medical School. She is director of the National Center for Research Resources for the National Institutes of Health in Bethesda, MD. At the Veterinary School, united at last For the first time in the history of the School of Veterinary Medicine, first-year students are studying on the Grafton campus this fall.

At the Veterinary School, united at last

The unification of all four veterinary classes in Grafton was made possible with the addition of two new academic facilities, a 12,000-square-foot teaching laboratory and a major renovation of the former farm animal ward in the Hospital for Large Animals. The renovated space features a new lecture hall, student lounge and computer room.

The $3.65 million project achieved a long-held goal of bringing the entire veterinary student body onto the Grafton campus. When the school first opened in 1978, space restrictions required first- and second-year students to study on the Health Sciences Campus in Boston. In 1993, second-year students first attended classes on the Grafton campus with the opening of the Franklin M. Loew Veterinary Medical Education Center.

First Omidyar Scholars selected

The Tufts University College of Citizenship and Public Service (UCCPS) began this fall with the start of the Omidyar Scholars Program. Supported by a generous gift from Pierre Omidyar, A88, founder of eBay, the online Internet trading community, and his wife, Pam Wesley Omidyar, J89, the program supports the development of values and skills of active citizenship and covers the financial aid needs of eligible students. Beginning in September, 21 Omidyar Scholars--eight freshmen, four sophomores, four juniors and five seniors--will meet regularly and receive leadership training and have access to funds to support individual and group community service and civic action work. In addition, the Omidyar Scholars will be asked to organize community affairs activities to share with the larger Tufts community. In order to facilitate their group work, they also will have an intensive semester of leadership training and team building, such as a weekend retreat at Outward Bound Thompson Island.

Chaplain McLennan makes a westward move

After 16 years, Reverend Scotty McLennan, Tufts chaplain, will be leaving the Hill for Stanford University in January.

He will be remembered as an educator and advisor who implemented and fostered programs in various Tufts institutions. He has also created and instructed courses in medical ethics at Tufts Medical and Dental schools. Recently he gained attention for his best-selling book, Finding Your Religion: When the Faith You Grew Up With Has Lost Its Meaning. He is also known as the cartoon character, Reverend Scott Sloan, which his Yale roommate, Garry Trudeau, created for his comic strip, Doonesbury.

 

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