History of the Presidency

May 18, 2021

Interim President: Amy Marcus-Newhall 2020-

The Board of Trustees appointed Amy Marcus-Newhall, vice president for academic affairs and dean of faculty, as interim president effective April 16. Marcus-Newhall served as a special advisor to President Lara Tiedens from April 1-15. Dean Marcus-Newhall served admirably as interim president in the 2015-2016 academic year, and she brings more than 30 years of […]

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October 12, 2020

Lara Tiedens: 2016-2020

Lara Tiedens began her tenure as president of Scripps College on August 1, 2016, assuming the title of the W.M. Keck Presidential Chair. President Tiedens has implemented initiatives to promote innovative pedagogy, ensure a holistic student experience, cultivate a diverse and inclusive community, and forge strategic partnerships to amplify Scripps’ impact and influence on the […]

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Amy Marcus-Newhall: Interim President 2015-2016

The Board of Trustees appointed Amy Marcus-Newhall, vice president for academic affairs and dean of faculty, as interim president effective mid-October. Marcus-Newhall worked closely with President Lori Bettison-Varga to manage the transition until her departure.

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March 18, 2014

Lori Bettison-Varga: 2009-2015

Lori Bettison-Varga became Scripps College’s eighth president in July 2009. She advanced the College’s reputation as a superior liberal arts college and a leader in women’s education, resulting in a significant increase in admission applications.

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March 12, 2014

Frederick “Fritz” Weis: 2007-2009

Frederick M. “Fritz” Weis became interim president of Scripps College effective July 1, 2007, as a national search was underway for its next president. Shortly after the search concluded in March 2009, the Board of Trustees voted to elevate his position to full president, making him the seventh president in the history of Scripps College.

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Nancy Bekavac: 1990-2007

Nancy Bekavac became the sixth president of Scripps College on July 1, 1990, the first woman president for Scripps College and the first woman president of any school in the Claremont Consortium.

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E. Howard Brooks: 1989-1990

E. Howard Brooks had a long and storied history with the Claremont Consortium before becoming president of Scripps College in 1989. He began as provost of The Claremont Colleges in 1971 after more than two decades of service to Stanford University, where he worked in a variety of senior administrative positions and as consultant to several foundations.

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John H. Chandler: 1976-1989

Chandler took office in 1976 at a time when both higher education and Scripps College faced a tenuous future; declining enrollment, budget deficits, deteriorating infrastructure, and disenfranchised alumnae had made the College campus less a community than we realize today. His task? Restore Scripps College to health, both financially and institutionally.

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Mark Curtis: 1964-1976

When Mark Curtis announced his resignation as third president of Scripps College in the spring of 1975, few could say they’d changed the landscape of the college — both aesthetically and academically — more than he had.

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Frederick Hard: 1944-1964

“I believe the small, independent, privately-supported institution is the best way to get an education,” wrote Frederick Hard in 1955. As Scripps College’s second and longest-serving president, he had a unique opportunity to put his theory to the test.

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Mary Kimberly Shirk: Interim President 1942-1944

With American involvement in World War II, the search for a new president of Scripps is temporarily halted and an interim female president is appointed: Mary Kimberly Shirk. Shirk, who was asked by the Board to “serve for a month or two,” remains in the position until the War concludes.

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Ernest Jaqua: 1925-1942

Born in Iowa in 1882 and educated at Grinnell College, Jaqua rapidly rose to positions of importance after receiving MAs from Columbia and Union Theological Seminary and a PhD from Harvard. He was named President of Scripps College in 1926 and quickly set out to build a name for the new institution.

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