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John Harvard's Journal

University People

September-October 2004

University Professors

Laurence H. Tribe
Kris Snibbe / Harvard News Office
George M. Whitesides
Stephanie Mitchell / Harvard News Office

Constitutional law scholar Laurence H. Tribe '62, J.D. '66, and chemist George M. Whitesides '60 have been named Loeb University Professor and Flowers University Professor, respectively. Tribe, a faculty member since 1968 who had been Tyler professor of constitutional law, is author of American Constitutional Law. A leading appellate advocate, he has presented dozens of cases to the U.S. Supreme Court. In 2003, he was lead author of the University's amicus brief in the cases concerning affirmative action in admission to the undergraduate and law schools at the University of Michigan. He also prepared the American Civil Liberties Union's amicus brief in Lawrence v. Texas, the case that overturned the ruling in Bowers v. Hardwick concerning private sexual conduct. And Tribe has helped draft new constitutions for South Africa, Russia, and the Czech Republic.

Whitesides, who had been Mallinckrodt professor of chemistry, joined the faculty in 1982. An expert in materials science (see "Phenomenal Surfaces," this magazine's July-August 1997 cover story), he has made fundamental discoveries in nanotechnology and has been recognized with the National Medal of Science and the Kyoto Prize. He is the first faculty member to hold this new University Professorship, established as part of a larger gift by J. Christopher Flowers '79, formerly an investment banker at Goldman, Sachs, and his wife, Mary H. White, in honor of his parents, Woodford L. and Ann A. Flowers. The senior Flowers, M.B.A. '52, worked on the Business School staff for many years. In announcing the appointments, President Lawrence H. Summers praised both professors for "having brought honor to Harvard through their scholarship and teaching."


Archival Appointment

The new Harvard University Archivist is Megan Sniffin-Marinoff, who has been librarian and deputy director of Radcliffe's Schlesinger Library. She succeeds Harley P. Holden, who retired in late 2003. Sniffin-Marinoff had previously been head of MIT's Institute Archives and Special Collections, and from 1980 to 1994 archivist of Simmons College and a professor in the Simmons Graduate School of Library and Information Science. She will phase into her new duties while continuing to oversee the renovation of the Schlesinger.


Deputy Dean

Patricia A. O'Brien
Courtesy of Patricia A. O'Brien

Patricia A. O'Brien, D.B.A. '86, became the deputy dean of Harvard College, a new position, on August 1. O'Brien, until then dean of the Simmons College School of Management, is co-master of Currier House. She will oversee residential and student life, undergraduate academic programs, the dean of freshmen, the registrar, and the office of career services, and will co-chair the Administrative Board with dean Benedict H. Gross, whose duties grew when the College deanship and the deanship of undergraduate education were merged as the curriculum review ramped up.