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The History of Harvard's Commencement, Explained

Hall to Take Industry Post Within Next Two Months

By James Cramer

Stephen S.J. Hall, vice president for administration, who has announced his intentions to leave Harvard May 15, said yesterday he may stay until Commencement if President Bok asks him to do so.

Hall will resign to take a post as president of a management services and counseling corporation headquartered in Boston.

Bok said yesterday that he may ask Hall to stay on part-time if the search for Hall's replacement does not go well.

Inside and Out

The search will include candidates from both inside and outside the administration, Bok said, adding that he believes a candidate from inside would have special knowledge and understanding that would benefit him in the selection process.

Hall served the University well, Bok said, "but we cannot and should not stand in the way of his career."

Hall said he could not mention the name of the corporation he will head at this time, because it is currently involved with a reorganization and merger that could affect the title he assumes.

"In two weeks if it goes solid then I'll tell you that, if I'm unemployed I'll tell you that," Hall said.

Although he regrets leaving his Harvard post, Hall said he told Bok when he came here in 1971 that he would stay five years.

Before coming to Harvard, Hall was director of operations support for ITT Sheraton Corporation and vice president of operations for Sheraton Inns.

Other Offers

Hall said he has had a number of offers to leave Harvard within the last few years, including one from the management corporation he has chosen. He said he turned down the corporation's offer originally because he did not think the corporation's organizational structure was sound.

But Hall said the structure of the corporation has improved, and his salary will be substantial. "The pay is there and the excitement is there," Hall said.

He described the corporation as a long-standing family company with sales of approximately $25 million a year.

The company provides a range of management services including information retrieval and reporting, market counseling and sales research.

Bok said he regretted Hall's departure, and cited programs that Hall initiated that have resulted in improved operations and costs savings.

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