West Virginia Executive Summer 2014 - Page 55

E. Gordon Gee, West Virginia University E. Gordon Gee was named West Virginia University’s president on March 3 after serving as the interim president for three months. After the board of governors’ unanimous vote, Gee was asked to serve WVU for the third time and reflects back on how the university has changed since he first took office. “Upon my return, some 30 years later, the university has moved into national and international status and views the world in a much wider way,” says Gee. “That is reflected by its research agenda, by the quality of the students and its faculty and the work it is doing in so many different areas. At the same time, one of the great strengths of WVU is that the institution has not lost its commitment or its importance to West Virginia.” Since WVU was the first university at which Gee held a presidential role, West Virginia will always be one of his favorite places. “The people of this state have always held a very warm spot in my heart,” he says. “I believe West Virginia is one of the greatest unrecognized spots on this earth. Its beauty, its location and its people make it a truly special place. I am glad to now be back and counted among its citizens.” Before returning to the Mountain State, Gee served as president of The Ohio State University from 1990-1997 and again from 2007-2013. Prior to his service at Ohio State, he led Vanderbilt University (20012007), Brown University (1998-2000), the University of Colorado (1985-1990) and West Virginia University (1981-1985). Gee has served in higher education for more than three decades, and in 2009, he was named by Time magazine as one of the Top 10 College Presidents in the United States. Through his long and prestigious career, Gee has learned some impor F