Presidents’ Day: A look through Kent State presidents


Presidents’ Day: A look through Kent State presidents

Maddy Haberberger

0218_NC_PKG_presidents from on Vimeo.

Presidents’ Day was a holiday created to honor the lives and work of former Presidents of the United States.

Here at Kent State, 12 presidents have served our student body since 1910. Dr. David Odell-Scott, Associate Dean of the College of Arts and Sciences, used the day to reflect on our presidents past and their individual legacies.

“Presidents of a university often wish to make their mark, such that their contribution to the university has a life beyond their professional career and possibly even their own individual life,” says Odell-Scott.

At Kent State things like academic buildings, roads, and residence halls are named after former presidents.

Odell-Scott, who has spent almost 30 years working in Bowman Hall, feels a connection with the history of his building.

“George Bowman was the president who decided to break the racial barrier, and he invited Oscar Ritchie to become Kent State’s first African American professor and also the first African American professor at a state university in Ohio.”

Here are all of the presidents who have served Kent State:

  • John Edward McGilvrey (1911-1926)

  • David Allen Anderson (1926-1928)

  • James Ozro Engleman (1928-1938)

  • Karl Clayton Leebrick (1938-1943)

  • George A. Bowman (1944-1963)

  • Robert I. White (1963-1971)

  • Glenn A. Olds (1971-1977)

  • Brage Golding (1977-1982)

  • Michael Schwartz (1982-1991)

  • Carol Cartwright (1991-July 2006)

  • Lester A. Lefton (July 2006-July 2014)

  • Beverly J. Warren (July 2014-July 2019)

A 13th president is on the horizon for Kent State pending the retirement of current President Beverly Warren this summer.