For Immediate Release
Gloria Gottschalk, New School University
(212) 229-5667, ext. 239

Danica Gallagher, George Arzt Communications, Inc.
(212) 608-0333, or (800) 941-8184

Former Senator and Governor of Nebraska to Guide University’s Seven-School Constellation into New Century


New York, NY, February 20, 2001 -- New School University officially installed Bob Kerrey, former U.S. Senator and Governor of Nebraska, as the University’s seventh president in a ceremony today at Carnegie Hall in Manhattan.

In special introductory remarks, Joseph Lieberman, United States Senator from Connecticut, referred to Bob Kerrey as "a thoughtful man, a man of insight and conviction, whose leadership on issues of education, technology, fiscal responsibility, and healthcare will be missed in Washington."

"New School University has found an exceptional president in Bob Kerrey," he declared.

Introductory remarks were also given by John L. Tishman, Chair of the Board of Trustees of New School University; L. Dennis Smith, President of the University of Nebraska; George Campbell, President of Cooper Union; Jonathan Fanton, former New School University President and current President of the McArthur Foundation; Gita Sen, Professor of the Indian Institute of Management; and Richard Bernstein, Vera List Professor of Philosophy at Graduate Faculty of Political and Social Science at New School University.

John L. Tishman welcomed Kerrey, stating: "From its founding, 87 years ago, New School University has had a tradition of understanding the rapid changes of the societies we, and other parts of the world live in. Our mission is to educate, even the educated, and to give a voice to critical dissent and a home to creative endeavors. Today, as we begin the new century with Bob Kerrey as our leader we look forward to expanding our individualism and traditions."

In his inaugural speech, Bob Kerrey called attention to his common origins with the first president of New School University, Alvin Johnson, the son of immigrant pioneers, raised on the Nebraska prairie: "It’s not strange that he felt right at home in the extraordinary ethnic, religious, racial and political diversity of New York City. In the Nebraska of the late 19th century, 90 percent of the population was born outside the United States."

Citing the importance of diversity to education, Senator Kerrey continued: "Now, into the new century, New York is again the golden door, with the largest population of new Americans since the 1920s…we are a genuine multicultural metropolis, a true city of the world. Such diversity affects all aspects of our lives: our design, our music, our storytelling, and our scholarship."

"New School University -- with one-third of our students coming from abroad and our history of critical, interdisciplinary thought -- embodies the notion that our differences make us stronger. It is our mission to embrace and enhance that strength." he stated.

Elizabeth D. Dickey, Provost of New School University and John L. Tishman, conducted the investiture of Bob Kerrey and presented him with the University Charters. The invocation was presented by The Reverend Darryl E. Berg.

The Mannes Orchestra from Mannes College of Music and an ensemble from New School University’s Jazz and Contemporary Music Program presented musical interludes.

During the ceremony, honorary degrees were awarded to photographer Sabastião Salgado (Doctor of Fine Arts), Martha C. Nussbaum, Professor of Law and Ethics at the University of Chicago (Doctor of Humane Letters), Richard D. Klausner, Director of the National Cancer Institute, (Doctor of Humane Letters), Joseph E. Stiglitz, Professor of Economics at Stanford University (Doctor of Humane Letters), and Esther Dyson, President of EDventure Holdings (Doctor of Humane Letters).

In his remarks, Philip Scaturro, Chancellor of New School University, said: "When I first met Bob Kerrey, I told him, ‘In the words of E.B. White, don’t come to New York unless you’re willing to be lucky.’ But, given Bob’s distinguished career and broad vision, I believe we’re the ones who are lucky."

Attending the ceremony were distinguished guests from the public, private and higher education sectors, in addition to University trustees, deans and officers, faculty, students and the administrative staff.

Past presidents of New School University were: Alvin Johnson (1921-1945), Bryn Hovde (1945-1950), Hans Simon (1950-1960), Henry David (1960-1962), John R. Everett (1964-1982), and Jonathan F. Fanton (1982-1999).

New School University comprises seven academic divisions: the Graduate Faculty of Political and Social Science, Robert J. Milano Graduate School of Management and Urban Policy, Parsons School of Design, Eugene Lang College, Mannes College of Music, Actors Studio Drama School, and The New School. The Joffrey/New School University and New School University’s Jazz and Contemporary Music Program round out the University’s offerings. The University also offers one of the largest selections of online courses in the nation.

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Bob Kerrey became President of New School University in January 2001. He previously was the senior United States Senator from Nebraska and had served in the Senate since 1989.

He was born in Lincoln, Nebraska on August 27, 1943. He graduated from Lincoln’s Northeast High School in 1961 and from the University of Nebraska at Lincoln with a degree in Pharmacy in 1966. He volunteered for service in the U.S. Navy as a Navy Seal in 1966, was wounded in action in Vietnam, and received an honorable discharge in 1969. He received the Congressional Medal of Honor in 1970, currently the only member of Congress to receive this honor.

In 1982, Bob Kerrey was elected Governor of Nebraska. As Governor, he inherited a three- percent deficit and was faced with a significant loss of federal subsidies. By 1987, when he left the Governor’s office, he had balanced the budget and turned the deficit into a seven percent surplus.

Governor Kerrey was a staunch advocate of increased investment in Nebraska’s schools and a consistent supporter of Head Start and early childhood education. He helped the University of Nebraska to develop closer ties to the state’s public school system. Among his many initiatives working with the University of Nebraska were programs to improve science and math education and expand on-line instruction.

He was elected to the U.S. Senate in 1988, and then re-elected to the Senate in November 1994. He served on many congressional committees, including the National Bipartisan Commission on the Future of Medicare, the Bipartisan Commission on Entitlement and Tax Reform (where he served as Chair), and the National Commission on Restructuring the Internal Revenue Service (where he served as Co-Chairman). In addition, he was Vice Chairman of the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence and a member of the Senate Finance Committee and the Senate Agricultural Committee. He served on the Senate Appropriations Committee from 1989-1996.

During his 17 years in politics, Bob Kerrey was recognized as an advocate of fiscal responsibility, educational technology, health care and entitlement reform, and a strong farm economy. Particularly in the area of education, Kerrey was a promoter of improving educational opportunities for Nebraska’s youth. He has fought to increase and improve investments in Title I funds, especially in the areas of math and science. In 1996, he launched CLASS (Communications Learning and Assessment in a Student-centered System project), which developed a fully accredited, interactive high school distance learning curriculum on the Internet. During the past year he was Chairman of the joint congressional Commission on Web-Based Education.



Esther Dyson is a publisher, investor and information technology consultant who is one of the most influential spokespersons for the educational potential of the digital age. Dyson is working to build a community of educators, innovators and investors who can think analytically and responsibly about the world that is being created by the Internet. She is chairman of EDventure Holdings, a diversified company focusing on emerging information technology worldwide. She is editor of Release 1.0, a computer industry monthly newsletter and Rel-FAST, a quarterly publication that covers the emerging computer markets in Central Europe and the former Soviet Union. Fluent in Russian, she has been a speaker at various computer conferences in Moscow and Bucharest and is a published author on Western business. Ms. Dyson graduated from Harvard with a bachelor’s degree in economics.

Richard D. Klausner is one of the world’s most cited scientists in cell and molecular biology who has authored over 250 scientific articles and several books. In 1995 he was appointed Director of the National Cancer Institute, the largest of the 17 institutes that make up the National Institute of Health. His research has illuminated the pathways by which molecules traffic and speak to each other within the cell and the mechanisms by which genes are regulated. Elected to the National Academy of Sciences in 1993, he chaired the Academy's project to develop standards for science education for the United States from kindergarten through 12th grade. The project is the first comprehensive attempt to describe a vision of scientific literacy for all students and to provide the criteria for the educational system to fulfill that vision. He received his undergraduate degree from Yale University and his medical degree from Duke University.

Martha Nussbaum is the Ernst Freund Distinguished Service Professor of Law and Ethics at the University of Chicago Law School. In addition to the Law School she holds appointments in the Philosophy Department and the Divinity School and is an Associate in Classics, an Affiliate of the Committee on Southern Asian Studies, and a board member of the Center for Gender Studies. Her work has focused on ancient Greek philosophy, contemporary moral and political philosophy, feminism and the connections between philosophy and literature. She is the author of many books, including Poetic Justice, Cultivating Humanity (Ness Book Award of the Association of American Colleges and Universities, 1998) and Sex and Social Justice, (Book Award of the North American Society for Social Philosophy, 2000). She has taught at Harvard, Brown and Oxford Universities and received her B.A. from N.Y.U. and her M.A. and Ph.D. from Harvard.

Sebastião Salgado is a photojournalist who made a major impact on the world in 1993 with Workers: An Archeology of the Industrial Age, a documentation of manual laborers struggling to make a living under inhumane conditions. As photographic objects of tone and light, his images convey dignity and beauty in the midst of human suffering. With each photograph, Salgado shows us the human experience on both the largest and the smallest scale. Born in Brazil in 1944, Salgado studied economics in both São Paulo and Paris, and worked from 1968 to 1973 as an economist. In the early 70’s, while on a tour of Africa as an economist for the International Coffee Organization, he decided to turn seriously to photojournalism. His other works include, Terra: Struggle of the Landless (1997), an exploration of the heroism of workers and farmers in Brazil and Migrations: Humanity in Transition (2000), an epic study of the displacement of people occurring throughout the world.

Joseph E. Stiglitz has been in Washington, D.C., much of the time since his appointment as Professor of Economics at Stanford University in 1988. He most recently was Senior Vice President and Chief Economist at the World Bank and before that, a member of the President’s Council of Economic Advisers which he chaired from 1995 to 1997. He has written extensively on the role that government should play in the economy, giving considerable attention to those areas — such as the environment, public health and safety, and research — where the market, by itself, may lead to inefficient outcomes and where cost effective government remedies can help. Mr. Stiglitz previously taught at Princeton, Yale, and All Souls College, Oxford. He studied at Amherst College and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.