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The Harvard Corporation has named six of its own members--along with three other officials--to a search committee aimed at finding a successor to outgoing University President Derek C. Bok.
Charles P. Slichter, a Corporation member and professor at the University of Illinois, will chair the nine-member committee, which includes four corporate executives, three professors and two layers. Six of the committee members sit on the Corporation, which has the final say over matters of University policy, and the other three are members of the Board of Overseers, a 30-member board that advises the Corporation.
Since Harvard presidents have traditionally distanced themselves from searches for their successors, Bok will not sit on the committee, making him the only Corporation member absent from it.
In its 340 years, the Corporation has never before appointed a formal committee to search for a University president, and it was unclear yesterday exactly what role the committee would play in the search process. The Corporation must make the final selection for president, but it must do so with the consent of the Board of Overseers.
As a result, the search committee is expected to determine what qualities Harvard needs in its 26th president, and forward a short list of candidates to the Corporation for a final decision. In a prepared release, Slichter said the committee plans to hold extensive discussions with individuals inside and outside the Harvard community over the next few months.
Slichter could not be reached for comment yesterday, but Ford Professor of the Social Sciences David Riesman '31, who is writing a book about the selection of university presidents, said the appointment of Slichter as chair was "an extraordinary choice."
"He is an admirable choice because he is, himself, a son of a Harvard professor and has a great dedication to this university," Riesman said.
Other Corporation members sitting on the committee are D. Ronald Daniel, the University treasurer who is a partner with a New York managing consulting firm; Judith R. Hope, a Washington lawyer with close ties to the Republican Party; Colman M. Mockler, chief executive of the Gillette Corporation; Robert G. Stone '45, a member of several corporate boards; and Henry Rosovsky, acting dean of the Faculty.
Rosovsky is widely rumored to be a leading candidate for the presidency, and Riesman said yesterday that the acting Faculty dean would probably have to step down from the committee if he remained a serious candidate through the late stages of the presidential search. Riesman, however, said that Rosovsky could sit on the committee and still remain a candidate during the search's early stages.
The three overseers who will also sit on the Committee are John C. Whitehead, the president of the Board of Overseers who is also an executive of a New York investment firm; Hanna H. Gray, the former president of the University of Chicago; and Wesley S. Williams, a Washington lawyer.
The nine committee members either refused tocomment or could not be reached by telephoneyesterday.
Bok, who became president on July 1, 1971,announced a month ago that he would step downafter next year
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