Joan Hinde Stewart
2016 Bellringer Award
In 2003, when Hamilton’s trustees selected you to lead the College, they were convinced that you were precisely the person to secure a sound future for a strong institution. They were right, of course. During your tenure, the College invested more than a quarter of a billion dollars in new and renovated facilities, adopted educational goals and a strategic plan to guide the institution, completed two successful capital campaigns, more than doubled its financial aid budget and more. However, your greatest legacy will be the 2010 need-blind admission decision that cemented the College’s commitment to access. As a result, Hamilton has become a college of choice for more of the highest-achieving students, regardless of their financial circumstances.
Although these accomplishments are just what the trustees believed you would deliver, you also proved to be a leader in more serendipitous ways. By sharing your life story as the first in your family to attend college, you illustrated the value of investing in future generations of -students. Throughout your tenure, and especially during the College’s bicentennial -celebration, you championed the transformative nature of a liberal arts education and Hamilton’s longstanding tradition of preparing graduates for successful and satisfying lives. And when Alexander Hamilton’s likeness was in danger of being removed from the $10 bill, you made an erudite case — with credibility and passion — for his importance.
“The college to which the most brilliant and foresighted of our founding fathers lent his name,” you once wrote, “can be a model for the nation and exemplify for the world what is best about higher education in America.” For 13 years, you’ve helped make Hamilton that place. For all that you’ve done for our alma mater, the Alumni Association is honored to present you with the 2016 Bell Ringer Award.
Gordon D. Kaye ’74
President, Alumni Association
June 11, 2016