Hamilton College is pleased to announce the appointment of Steven Tepper, nationally recognized leader in creativity and education, as the 21st president of the College, effective July 1, 2024. Currently serving as dean and director of the Herberger Institute for Design and the Arts at Arizona State University (ASU), Tepper brings a wealth of experience and a visionary approach to making creativity and human expression central to learning, discovery, and civic engagement.

The Hamilton College Board of Trustees unanimously elected Tepper in January 2024, following a nationwide search that included input from faculty, students, and alumni. He will succeed David Wippman who is retiring in June after eight years as president.

Tepper is a national leader in cultural policy and is widely recognized for leading the largest comprehensive design and arts college in America. He was a key architect of two national policy
centers focused on creativity and cultural policy at Princeton University and Vanderbilt University
and launched the Sidney Poitier New American Film School at ASU.

“Hamilton’s rich history, emphasis on communication, open curriculum, and dedication to fostering a diverse, inclusive, and creative campus are values that resonate with me deeply.”

While at Arizona State, Tepper was lauded for his ability to assemble the best technologies and talent in the world, combining the disciplines of art, science, engineering, technology, and media. His dedication to cultivating an inclusive learning environment and promoting interdisciplinary collaboration aligns seamlessly with Hamilton College’s commitment to providing a transformative education that prepares students for a world undergoing rapid change.

“Steven Tepper is the ideal candidate to lead Hamilton College into the future,” said David Solomon, chair of the Hamilton College Board of Trustees. “With his proven leadership, commitment to academic excellence, and innovative vision for the future of higher education, he is the perfect choice to carry on the incredible legacy of President Wippman, guiding Hamilton through the challenges and opportunities that lie ahead.”

“I am honored and excited to join the Hamilton College community,” said Tepper. “Hamilton’s rich history, emphasis on communication, open curriculum, and dedication to fostering a diverse, inclusive, and creative campus are values that resonate with me deeply. I look forward to working with the talented students, faculty, alumni, trustees, and staff on the next phase of Hamilton’s evolution – one that elevates Hamilton as the most creative and connected liberal arts campus in the world.”

Steven Tepper

21st President, Hamilton College

Current Dean, the Herberger Institute for Design and the Arts, Arizona State University

Ph.D., Princeton University
M.P.P., Harvard University
B.A., The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

Bio & CV

While at Arizona State, Tepper has been a champion for inclusivity, more than tripling the number of Hispanic, Black, and Indigenous full-time faculty; creating dozens of fellowships and visiting positions for artists and designers from under-represented communities; and facilitating the launch of new courses, tracks, and degrees that embrace more diverse cultural expression. Tepper’s passion for the liberal arts and commitment to academic excellence will undoubtedly contribute to Hamilton’s continued success in preparing students for a lifetime of meaning, purpose, and active citizenship.

Tepper’s appointment follows an extensive nationwide search led by a search committee co-chaired by Hamilton Trustees Linda Johnson and Bob Delaney. “Steven Tepper emerged as the unanimous top finalist from a strong and diverse pool of well-qualified candidates,” said Johnson. Delaney noted Tepper stood out “for his commitment to the idea and promise of a liberal arts education, and his vision to graduate students who are connected to and prepared to thrive in a world of constant and accelerating transformation. His vast scholarly record and the breadth of his leadership experience make him the perfect match for Hamilton.”

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Steven Tepper and his wife, Dana, visited the Hill on February 29 for a day of events that included touring campus and academic facilities, meeting with students, faculty, and staff, and giving his first in-person remarks since being announced as Hamilton’s 21st president.

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