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The GW Hatchet

Serving the GW Community since 1904

The GW Hatchet

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PAUL closes in Western Market
By Ella Mitchell, Staff Writer • April 22, 2024

Board of Trustees extends Knapp’s contract until 2017

Steven Knapp
University President Steven Knapp began his tenure in 2007. File photo.

Updated Oct. 21, 12:18 p.m.

The Board of Trustees voted unanimously today to renew University President Steven Knapp’s contract for an additional five years.

His first term will end in August 2012.

“I’m very pleased by this vote of confidence,” Knapp said after the meeting.

Knapp, the University’s 16th president, has focused on research, fundraising and managing the cost of attendance in his first four years.

“Our multitalented and very accomplished president really never ceases to amaze us,” Board of Trustees Chairman Russell Ramsey said Friday during the meeting’s open session, shortly before the Board “enthusiastically” voted to extend Knapp’s contract.

Ramsey said the extension was an internal board decision pitched by its governance, compensation and nominations committee and unanimously accepted by the Board. While students, faculty and administrators were consulted during the original search process in 2007, no additional input was included by the Board at this time.

The president’s list of priorities has expanded since he arrived at the University to include research, sustainability and diversity.

“Everything is aimed at continuing to raise the stature of the University,” Knapp said.

This academic year, Knapp and the team of administrators he assembled in his first term will work to develop a strategic academic plan for the University, a comprehensive fundraising campaign and a rebranding overhaul.

“I would say things have been going in a very positive direction. I think we’re moving the University forward in the ways we intended,” Knapp told the Hatchet earlier this week, although he declined to say if he was seeking an extension to his contract.

Knapp, 60, joins the ranks of nine other University presidents who served terms longer than five years. At four-year private institutions like GW, 53 percent of presidents served in that role for six years or longer, according to data from the Chronicle of Higher Education.

Administrators in charge of student life, academics, finances and development – many of whom Knapp recruited – widely praised the president’s agenda.

“In the four years [Knapp] has been here we’ve moved significantly forward,” University Treasurer Lou Katz said earlier.

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