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Beth Sorensen
Office of Communications


Portland, ORPeter J. Steinberger, the Robert H. and Blanche Day Ellis Professor of Political Science and Humanities and dean of the faculty at Reed College, has been named acting president of the college, effective July 1, 2001.

The board of trustees unanimously approved the appointment at its regularly scheduled meeting on Saturday, April 21.

"Peter Steinberger is an outstanding teacher-scholar and one of the most articulate and enthusiastic supporters of Reed's academic program and traditions," said Walter Mintz, chairman of the Reed board of trustees. "The trustees are delighted that he is willing to assume the important responsibilities of acting president until a new president is appointed."

Steven Koblik, president of the college since 1992, is leaving Reed to become president of the Huntington Library, Art Collections, and Botanical Gardens, in San Marino, California.

Steinberger will appoint an acting dean of the faculty; he will resume his responsibilities as dean after completing his term as acting president.

"Steve Koblik's extraordinary and historic presidency, building on the wonderful foundation laid by former president Paul Bragdon, has left the college in terrific shape," said Steinberger. "I firmly believe that no one anywhere provides a better undergraduate education than Reed. For me, being a member of this faculty and having an opportunity to serve the institution in other ways is a gift."

Steinberger is the author of The Concept of Political Judgment (University of Chicago Press, 1993), Logic and Politics: Hegel's Philosophy of Right (Yale University Press, 1988), and Ideology and the Urban Crisis (State University of New York Press, 1985). He is the editor of Readings in Classical Political Thought (Hackett Publishing, 2000). He has written about politics in articles and opinion pieces in periodicals that include the New York Times, the Wall Street Journal, and the Christian Science Monitor. His work has been published in many learned journals, including the American Political Science Review, American Journal of Political Science, Journal of Politics, and Political Theory. He was a member of the Oregonian editorial board and editorial writer in 1987.

Steinberger has been a member of the Reed faculty since 1977 and was named to the Ellis professorship in 1993. He has been dean of the faculty since 1997. Steinberger has taught classes in subjects that include classical and modern political philosophy , Hegel and Marx, judgment, the idea of the state, Western humanities, and political analysis. In 1989 he received Reed College's Burlington Northern Award in recognition of distinguished teaching. Before joining the Reed faculty he taught at the University of California—Riverside and the University of Denver.

Steinberger earned a Ph.D. from the University of California—Riverside in 1976, and he holds a B.A. and an M.A. from Fordham University.

A search committee headed by Stephen McCarthy ’66, vice chairman of the Reed board of trustees, has begun the process of selecting the college's next president.

Reed College in Portland, Oregon, is an independent, coeducational, non-sectarian college of the liberal arts and sciences. Since its founding in 1908, Reed has remained steadfast in its original commitment to provide a balanced, comprehensive undergraduate education, fulfilling the highest possible standards of intellectual excellence. All of the college’s 1,300 students are required to write a senior thesis in their major field.

Reed awards the bachelor of arts degree and has a small master’s program. Teaching methods at the college are personalized: classes are generally small, and most are held as conferences, where ideas are exchanged and debated.

Reed has had 31 Rhodes scholars since 1915 (a number met by only one other liberal arts college) and is a leader in graduating future Ph.D.s in the sciences.

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