Looking back as a
historian on your tenure at Reed, how would you describe the Koblik years?
of the Koblik presidency
Since 1992, Reed has:
- Increased the overall building square
footage by 30 percent, adding 275,000 square feet of new
and renovated building space for academic programs and in
support of student life
- Tripled the endowment from $116 million
1992 to more than $349 million in 2000
- Increased gifts from non-trustee alumni
from $8.9 million in the last campaign to $48.7 million
in the recently completed campaign
In addition, since 1992 Reed students and
alumni have won many prestigious awards, including a Rhodes
scholarship, 10 American Association of University Women awards,
5 Beinecke awards, a Carnegie endowment international peace
fellowship, 15 Fulbrights, a MacArthur genius
award, a Marshall scholarship, 13 Mellon awards, 5 National
Academy of Science awards, 31 National Science Foundation
awards, and 16 Thomas J. Watson fellowships.
I am a contemporary historian, and because of that I am aware that one of
the greatest difficulties in interpreting contemporary history is that ones
perspective is very likely to be wrong. Its much easier for historians
to interpret a period given some time perspective.
Having said that, I think that the college was able to strengthen itself
in terms of competing on a national level to fulfill its mission. It strengthened
itself to do that with a massive change in the faculty, both in generational
changes and in enrichment of the faculty and the curriculum. We have added
15 new tenure-track positions without changing the size of the student body.
In addition, more than 50 percent of the faculty has been hired since Ive
been here. Thats a couple of generations of new faculty members and
new faculty leaders, and what they will do in the future will very much
affect the way people interpret these years.
been able to do other things such as improving research-based learning opportunities
for students and scholarly research opportunities for the faculty, particularly
in the sciences. Another achievement is moving toward becoming a more residential
college, from about 50 percent of students living on campus in 1990 to more
students today wanting to live on campus than our 65 percent bed capacity
The key to all this is that it occurs against a backdrop of a national economic
prosperity, so the college has been able to raise new funds that will allow
us to achieve some things that have not been possible previouslyto
dream impossible dreams such as ensuring that any student with talent can
come to Reed and not be overburdened with loans. Were still a long
way away from that dream, but I believe weve made significant strides
in getting there.
Kobliks charm, direct style, and wonderful sense of humor
have been appreciated by all those who have come into association
with him. His appreciationand support of faculty, staff, and alumni,
and the students who make Reed the unique place it is, have never
wavered. He leaves Reed a better place than he found it.
Alumni board resolution
assumed the presidency with inspiration, dedication, and an apparently
endless supply of energy. He has nurtured the college through real
challenges and led us to new heights while remaining true to the
spirit of this unique institution. Like all of us who love the college,
Steve will be a Reedie for life.
Michele Funk 94, former student
body president and former alumni association president
What effect has
your presidency had on the Portland area?
I decided that as an institution we needed to focus on support of K-12.
I think Reed has always made contributions to K-12 in Portland, but that
effort hasnt been well coordinated. In the past seven years, the
school has started doing that. In addition, I served on the boards of
the Boys & Girls Aids Society, Loaves and Fishes, and the Governors
Task Force on Higher Education.