The search committee rank and file

The Academics

Sharon E. Gagnon, president of the Board of Overseers, will have a long commute for committee meetings. A resident of Alaska, Gagnon is the former President of the Board of regents at the University of Alaska--she even has a street in Anchorage named after her.

Gagnon's familiarity with Harvard is well-established. She served as the president of the Harvard Alumni Association before becoming an Overseer in 1995. In addition, Gagnon keeps in contact with Harvard students from Alaska.

Those who have worked with Gagnon praised not only her intelligence but also her ability to work with others.

"She's just extremely diligent, measured and very sensitive to all the complexities," former president of the Board of Overseers Charlotte P. Armstrong '49 says. "She has an excellent sense of how a major university functions."

Though Gagnon lives thousands of miles from Cambridge, Armstrong says she does not believe the distance will be a problem.

"She's never missed a meeting and is always available," Armstrong says.

Overseer Thomas E. Everhart '53 is the newest academic in the group, serving as president emeritus of the California Institute of Technology.