Simmons College has been fortunate to have incredible presidents who have confidently led our institution. In honor of Presidents Day I thought it would be nice to hear a little about Simmons' first president and our most current president.
Henry Lefavour President, 1901 - 1933
Henry Lefavour, 1860-1946, received a B.A. and Ph.D in physics from Williams College. In 1901, the Corporation of the recently founded, but yet unopened, Simmons Female College asked Lefavour to conduct a study and write a report on a program of organization that would translate John Simmons's vision into reality. Lefavour presented his report to the Corporation on September 26, 1901. As part of his presentation, he stated:
"I should advise then at the outset a technical college of high standard, receiving girls who have already a foundation of general knowledge and graduating them well-equipped with both a broad intellectual or artistic foundation and a specialized technical training that will open to them some avenue of remunerative labor."
It was under him the Main College Building was built and our first resident halls were open!
Helen G. Drinan President, 2008 -Present
Helen G. Drinan brings a depth of leadership experience in non-profit and for-profit organizations to the presidency of Simmons College. An alumna of two Simmons graduate school programs and a former chair of its Board of Directors, Drinan has been closely connected to the College for more than three decades.
As an undergraduate alumna of Mount Holyoke College, Drinan understands firsthand the value of an all-women's college. Her experience as a Peace Corps volunteer in the Philippines in the early '70s also provided her with multicultural experiences that she would later carry over into her diversity work. She received her Master of Library and Information Science from the Simmons Graduate School of Library and Information Science in 1975 and an MBA from the Simmons School of Management in 1978. In 1993, the School of Management named her the recipient of the Phyllis Rappaport Alumnae Achievement Award.
President Drinan recently presented the 2015 plan and I am personally excited to see where Simmons College is headed!
For more information on the college presidents please go to the Simmons College Archives.