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Thursday, October 9, 2008


Pasadena, Calif., October 9, 2008 – The Board of Trustees of Art Center College of Design announced today the appointment of Dr. Frank L. Ellsworth as Interim President of the College. Dr. Ellsworth’s appointment is effective immediately and will extend through the ongoing search for a permanent president, which is anticipated by the end of 2009.

In a career spanning over forty years, Dr. Ellsworth brings a broad range of experience in higher education, the arts, fundraising, nonprofit management, and governance. During his academic career he served as President of Pitzer College, as the youngest president in the history of The Claremont Colleges; President of the Independent Colleges of Southern California; and most recently, President of The Japan Society in New York City. He has combined teaching and administration at these and a diverse number of academic institutions, including Columbia University, Sarah Lawrence College, Pennsylvania State University, and The University of Chicago, where he served as Assistant Dean in the Law School.

Active in cultural and community affairs, Dr. Ellsworth currently serves on several boards, including Give2Asia, The Paul Taylor Dance Foundation, Global Partners Institute, and the American Friends, National Portrait Gallery (London).

Dr. Ellsworth received his A.B. cum laude from Adelbert College, Case Western University; his M.Ed. from Pennsylvania State University and his M.A. from Columbia University; and his Ph.D. from the University of Chicago. He has also received two honorary Doctor of Law degrees from Pepperdine University and Southwestern University School of Law.

In making the announcement, John Puerner, Chairman of The Board of Trustees said, “On behalf of the Board of Trustees, we are very pleased to have Frank join us as Interim President and provide ongoing momentum for Art Center during this transition period. We are confident that Frank’s diverse background combined with his deep knowledge of higher education will be very valuable as we continue to move the College’s agenda forward. We look forward to his contributions and leadership.”

Dr. Ellsworth said, “The reputation of the faculty of Art Center College of Design is long standing and outstanding. The graduates reflect admirably on this small, vibrant College and their influence permeates the lives of people throughout the world. I am honored to be able to play a role.”


Update from the Presidential Search Committee (9/29/08)

At today's meeting of the Presidential Search Committee, three search firms were interviewed. These firms — which were selected from an initial group of six well-respected firms that had submitted proposals — are all internationally-recognized, have impressive track records of success, and clearly understand the depth, breadth and scope of search that Art Center requires.

The Search Committee will make their decision within the next few days and will meet with the selected firm next week. The search firm will then meet with the Board of Trustees and report on their progress at the October 23 Board meeting.

The Search Committee will issue periodic updates when additional milestones have been achieved in the search for a new permanent President for Art Center.