College President Phil Hanlon ’77 to step down June of 2023

He began his term as president in 2013.

by The Dartmouth Senior Staff | 1/25/22 11:10am

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by Jin Lee / The Dartmouth Staff

After a decade in charge, College President Phil Hanlon will step down effective June 2023, he wrote in an email to campus today. 

Hanlon, who wrote that he has informed the Board of Trustees of his decision, became Dartmouth’s 18th president in June 2013, succeeding former President Jim Yong Kim, who left Dartmouth to become president of the World Bank.

“As the vision I set forth almost 10 years ago becomes reality, the time is right to pass the torch,” Hanlon wrote, adding that “it has been the honor of a lifetime to serve Dartmouth.”

In his announcement, Hanlon emphasized the progress toward his decadal vision for the College. 

“Our progress has been fueled by historic investments across the institution in the academic enterprise and the undergraduate and graduate student experience, made possible by extensive community participation in The Call to Lead campaign,” he wrote. 

The flagship $3 billion Call to Lead campaign, launched in 2014 and formally announced in 2018, hit its goal in October 2021. It has funded a number of major projects on campus, including an expansion of financial aid — the restoration of need-blind admissions for international students and the elimination of loans for students whose families make under $125,000 per year — the construction of the Irving Energy Institute and Center for Computer Science, the renovation of the Hopkins Center of the Arts and an expansion of mental health resources. 

Other major developments during Hanlon’s tenure included the Moving Dartmouth Forward initiative, which saw the creation of a residential community housing system, a hard alcohol ban and new policies on sexual misconduct

Additionally, the COVID-19 pandemic that swept the world in March 2020 caused a tumultuous two years at Dartmouth. Between the move to and then away from online learning, a continuing mental health crisis and the looming prospect of new variants of the virus, the College’s future remains in flux. Hanlon’s approval rating among students during the pandemic dipped to historic lows; a graduation survey of the Class of 2021 indicated an 11% approval rating, a sizable drop from the year before. 

Hanlon wrote that while finishing his tenure, he will give the Board “ample time” to find the next president and is committed to facilitating a smooth leadership transition.

His departure will mean that three of the College’s highest administrative positions will have turned over in just two years. Former Provost Joseph Helble announced in April 2021 that he would depart to become president of Lehigh University, his alma mater, and former Dean of the College Kathryn Lively resigned in July, returning to the sociology department. They were replaced by interim Provost David Kotz and interim Dean of the College Scott Brown, respectively. 

This article will be updated as more information becomes available. 

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