April 19, 2022 | Office of the President

Message from Board of Trustees Chair Robert F. White ’77, P15 (April 19, 2022)

Dear members of the Bowdoin community,

By now you have likely read Clayton’s message, in which he announces that the 2022–2023 academic year will be his last as president of our college. As you might imagine, it was with great reluctance that the board accepted Clayton’s decision, but we understand and respect his reasoning and his timing. As he wrote in his note to you, Bowdoin is as strong as ever across virtually every dimension, and as we emerge from the pandemic and work to return the College to something much closer to normal, there is an opportunity for new leadership to build upon these great strengths.

That said, we wouldn’t be here without Clayton’s vision, steadfast leadership, quiet confidence, and his insightful ability to bring people together for common ends. His ethical bearing and dedication to the mission of our college have been evident all along the way, and the wisdom, fortitude, and compassion he has shown these last two years continue to guide all of us through one of the most challenging periods in our own history and for all of higher education. We will miss Clayton and Julianne when they leave but there is still much to be done and there is no chance that Clayton will take his foot off the pedal!

Meanwhile, with your help and input, the work of the board will be to identify Clayton’s successor, and I am very pleased to report that trustees Sydney Asbury ’03 and Bertrand Garcia-Moreno ’81, P’17 have agreed to serve as cochairs of the Presidential Search Committee that will be formed following the board’s campus meetings May 12–14. The committee will include trustees, a non-trustee alumni representative, and members of the faculty, staff, and student body. You can read more on the Bowdoin website about Sydney and Bertrand and why the board has such great confidence in their commitment to the College and their ability to lead this important effort. 

We will have ample opportunities in the coming fourteen months to reflect upon Clayton’s tenure and to recognize and celebrate all that he has accomplished as our president. For now, I know you join me in thanking Clayton and Julianne for their steady leadership, their energy and enthusiasm, and their ongoing dedication to Bowdoin.


Robert F. White ’77, P’15
Chair, Bowdoin College Board of Trustees