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Casper selects Condoleezza Rice to be next Stanford provost
STANFORD -- Political science Professor Condoleezza Rice has been named provost of Stanford University by President Gerhard Casper.
Rice, 38, will take office Sept. 1 as the university's chief academic and budget officer, and its second-ranking official behind the president. She succeeds Gerald J. Lieberman, 67, who will return to being a professor of operations research and statistics, having completed the 18 months he agreed to serve as provost during Stanford's presidential transition.
"I think she will make a great provost, and I am personally delighted," Lieberman said. "She has tremendous ability and intelligence, and the maturity of someone far beyond her age."
Rice first came to Stanford in 1981 and returned in 1991 after two years in the White House, most recently as special assistant to the president for national security affairs and senior director for Soviet affairs for the National Security Council. As such, she was the White House specialist on the Soviet Union in 1989-91, during the transformation of that country, and was deeply involved in the formulation of U.S. policy on the emerging democracies of Eastern Europe.
At Stanford, she has written two books and many articles; won the university's highest teaching awards; and served in a broad array of roles ranging from faculty senate member to freshman adviser to member of four major search committees.
Casper said he first met Rice in February of 1992 when she and some other members of Stanford's presidential search committee visited him in Chicago.
"I was greatly impressed by her academic values, her intellectual range, her eloquence," Casper said. "Since then, I have come to admire her judgment and persuasiveness, as well. In terms of age, Professor Rice will bring into the leadership of the university a generation that I would like to see play an increasingly important role in Stanford affairs.
"Stanford University is most fortunate in persuading someone of Professor Rice's exceptional talents and proven ability in critical situations to take on this task. Everything she has done, she has done well; I have every confidence that she will continue that record as provost.
"In the contemporary university, more than ever, president and provost have to be a team," he said. "Indeed, the entire leadership of the university has to work as a team.
"With the addition of Professor Rice as provost and Professor John Shoven as dean of the School of Humanities and Sciences, and the appointment of Professor Charles Kruger as dean of research a few months ago, I have completed putting my team together. I am very grateful to all those, in roles new and old, who have joined me in committing themselves to help build Stanford, as I said in my state of the university address, "quietly, honestly, steadfastly, stone after stone."
Rice echoed that commitment to taking the university forward.
"Ever since I came to Stanford as a young assistant professor, I have known how fortunate I am to be a part of this wonderful place," she said. "But I must say that when I decided to return to the university two years ago, I did so with even greater commitment to, and appreciation of, the freedom of thought, exploration and expression that the academy allows. There is no other environment that can match the energy of a place like this - where leaders in their fields create ideas and transmit them to the best young minds in the world.
"Stanford is a truly great university. And great institutions can only get better or slide backward. I am committed to protecting the values and standards that help us attract and select the best possible faculty, staff and students; that sustain and promote research excellence; that demand that we teach with passion, skill and determination.
"Stanford - like all universities - is in a maelstrom of change. Just as I was fortunate to be given a chance to help shape America's response to the extraordinary events that ended the Cold War, I am honored that President Casper has placed faith in my judgment and ability to meet Stanford's challenges. I share his, and the faculty's, love for the academy and strong belief in Stanford. That is why I am so looking forward to joining this team and cherish the chance to work with it and my faculty colleagues in the exciting times ahead."
The new provost's academic credentials include two books - The Soviet Union and the Czechoslovak Army, 1948-1983: Uncertain Allegiance and, with Alexander Dallin, The Gorbachev Era - and a third forthcoming, with Philip Zelikow on German Unification and the Endgame of the Cold War. She has published a score of scholarly articles on such subjects as Soviet and East European foreign and defense policy, and has lectured to such groups as the Defense College of Japan, the Beijing Institute for International Studies; and, in Russian, to Soviet military and foreign policy experts at the U.S. ambassador's residence in Moscow.
She also has been recognized as one of Stanford's outstanding teachers, winning the 1984 Walter J. Gores Award for Excellence in Teaching and a 1993 Dean's Teaching Award.
Her wide-ranging university activities have included serving as a member of the faculty senate; a freshman adviser; director of graduate studies for the political science department; on the Provost's Committee on the Status of Women in the University; on the Committee on Undergraduate Admissions and Financial Aid; on the National Centennial Campaign Faculty; and on the search committees for the university president (1991-92), dean of undergraduate admissions (1991), football coach (1988) and provost (1983-84).
Her many public addresses on foreign policy include two national radio broadcasts for the Commonwealth Club and speeches for the Council on Foreign Relations, of which she is a lifetime member and a former fellow. She is a member of the Aspen Strategy Group, a trustee of the National Endowment for the Humanities, and a former member of the board of directors of the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace.
Rice earned her bachelor's degree, and membership in Phi Beta Kappa, at the University of Denver in 1974; her master's degree from Notre Dame University in 1975; and her doctorate from the Graduate School of International Studies at the University of Denver in 1981. Morehouse College awarded her an honorary doctor of Laws degree in 1991.
She came to Stanford in 1981 as an assistant professor of political science and assistant director of the Center for International Security and Arms Control. She was promoted to associate professor with tenure in 1987, and to full professor in 1993. She also is a fellow, by courtesy, of the Hoover Institution.
She took leave from February 1989 through March 1991 for her appointment to the White House. There, in addition to her other duties, she accompanied President Bush to the Malta, Washington and Helsinki U.S.- Soviet summit meetings, and was a member of the U.S. delegation to the "2 + 4 Talks" on German unification.
Rice also is active in community service. She is a founding board member of the Center for a New Generation, an educational support fund for East Palo Alto schools, and a former member of the boards of directors of the Mid-Peninsula Urban Coalition and KQED public broadcasting. She also is a member of several corporate boards.
Rice speaks Russian, is an accomplished pianist and was at one time a competitive figure-skater. She was born Nov. 14, 1954, in Birmingham, Ala. Her father, John W. Rice, is retired after a career as a Presbyterian minister and assistant vice chancellor of Denver University. Her mother, the late Angelena Ray Rice, was a musician and longtime high school teacher in the Birmingham and Denver public schools. Her stepmother, Clara, is principal of Menlo Oaks School in Menlo Park.
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