About: About Our President
Walter E. Massey, Ph.D.
Walter E. Massey, Ph.D. is currently the President of the School of the Art Institute of Chicago, a post he assumed in the fall of 2010. He is also the President Emeritus of Morehouse College in Atlanta, Georgia, having served as President there from 1995 to 2007. Immediately prior to that post, Dr. Massey was Provost and Senior Vice President for Academic Affairs of the University of California system. In that role he oversaw three national Department of Energy laboratories. Additional credentials to Dr. Massey’s distinguished career in academics include serving as Professor of Physics and Dean of the College at Brown University, a Professorship at the University of Chicago, and serving as faculty at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.
A prominent physicist, Dr. Massey served as Director of the Argonne National Laboratory from 1979 to 1984, and was Professor of Physics and Vice President of research at the University of Chicago from 1979 to 1991. He also served as Director of the National Science Foundation from 1991 to 1993, appointed by former President George H.W. Bush.
Throughout his academic career, Dr. Massey has been an advocate for issues surrounding minority students and education. He developed and directed the Inner City Teachers of Science Program while at Brown University, where college students studying education became tutors and mentors in urban classrooms. He was also a founding trustee of the Illinois Mathematics and Science Academy.
In the corporate sector, Dr. Massey has served as director and Chairman of the Board of Bank of America, and is currently serving on the board of McDonald’s and as Immediate Past Chair of the Board of the Salzburg Global Seminar. He is also a former trustee of the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, a Fellow of the American Physical Society and the American Association for the Advancement of Science, and a member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, the American Philosophical Society, and the Council of Foreign relations. As an educator, administrator, corporate leader, and scientist, Dr. Massey’s varied experience is a great asset to the SAIC community.
Dr. Massey has notably been the recipient of more than 30 honorary degrees from institutions that include Yale university, Northwestern University, Amherst, and Ohio State university. Much of his research has involved quantum liquids and solids, while his written work discusses university-industry partnerships and the issue of technology transfer. More specifically, it addresses the distribution of skills among institutions, and developing greater accessibility to new technology and materials.
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