The Brown University News Bureau
Distributed May 21, 1997
Contact: Richard Morin
Rhode Island Senate salutes Brown President Vartan Gregorian
Brown University President Vartan Gregorian will be honored by Rhode Island
state senators this afternoon for his service to the state and local community.
The ceremony will take place at 4:30 in the Senate
PROVIDENCE, R.I. -- Rhode Island state senators will pay tribute to outgoing
Brown University President Vartan Gregorian during a legislative ceremony today
at 4:30 p.m. in the Senate Chambers of the Rhode Island State House.
At the conclusion of today's legislative session, Majority Leader Paul Kelly
and his fellow senators will salute Gregorian for his contributions to Brown
University, education, and Rhode Island. A reception in Room 313 of the Rhode
Island State House will follow.
Gregorian, the 16th president of Brown University, will leave Rhode Island
to become president of the Carnegie Corporation of New York, one of the
nation's largest and most prestigious grant-making foundations. Gregorian will
continue his work at Brown through July and will assist the University during
its search for his successor.
Gregorian was chosen as Brown's 16th president in August 1988 and was sworn
in on Jan. 11, 1989, succeeding Howard R. Swearer. He arrived at Brown with
characteristic enthusiasm, declaring his intention to strengthen the faculty,
expand support for the libraries and enhance the academic and intellectual
experience of Brown students. By all accounts he has delivered on those
He has also worked to improve the Providence and Rhode Island Communities
directly through his own involvement in civic affairs and indirectly by
championing programs of public and community service. During his tenure, Brown
- established the Annenberg Institute for School Reform: The
Annenberg Institute is a point of contact and coordination for a number of
promising school-reform projects. It has worked with the Annenberg Foundation
and Gregorian in deploying the $500-million Annenberg Challenge to the Nation,
which supports school reform in major U.S. cities.
- fostered programs of public service: Brown continues its
leadership of the Campus Compact, an organization of more than 500 colleges and
universities that facilitates community service and service-learning programs.
The Venture Consortium, a Brown-based coalition of colleges and universities,
provides students with a variety of experiences, from semesters away to
teaching internships in the inner-city. This year Brown published a directory
of more than 240 University-affiliated public-service initiatives in the
- helped resolve the banking crisis: In January 1991, newly
inaugurated Rhode Island Gov. Bruce Sundlun closed many banks and credit unions
to avert disaster threatened by the collapse of the state's deposit insurance
system. Gregorian accepted Sundlun's request to investigate the banking
collapse. Using Brown faculty and staff and securing pro bono assistance from
private attorneys, the Gregorian Commission produced Carved in Sand, an
authoritative two-volume report, at no cost to the state. The University also
arranged no-interest loans for Brown employees whose deposits were frozen
during the crisis.
- established H.E.L.P. Health and Education Leadership for Providence
(H.E.L.P.), founded in September 1994, is a coalition of Providence's 10
independent non-profit hospitals and universities working to create
collaborative solutions to the city's pressing problems, particularly in public
education. Member institutions meet to create new programs drawing upon the
unique resources that hospitals and universities offer the community.
- addressed social problems through the Providence Plan: Gregorian
announced in May 1991 that the University would work with the City of
Providence to eliminate neighborhood poverty by the end of the decade. Brown's
A. Alfred Taubman Center for Public Policy and American Institutions worked
with the city to develop and implement The Providence Plan, a non-profit
organization created to develop a comprehensive strategy to address social
problems which contribute to poverty.
- established the City of Providence Scholars: In 1991, Gregorian
instituted the City of Providence Scholars Program to support talented
applicants from the Providence public schools. Each year since, two students
who have been admitted from the local applicant pool and who qualify for
financial aid are named Providence Scholars and receive financial support
throughout their four years at Brown.
- attracted the Northeast and Islands Regional Education Laboratory:
This consortium of Brown and Hunter College at City University of New York is
one of 10 regional centers in the nation charged with helping children in
grades K-12 achieve academic excellence through education reform. Established
at Brown in December 1995, and funded by a $24-million contract from the U.S.
Department of Education, it supports school systems in New England, New York,
Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands.