Stone to be Provost as of Jan. 1
Geoffrey Stone has been named Provost of the University by President Hugo F. Sonnenschein. Stone, who is Dean of the Law School and an authority on civil rights and the First Amendment, will become the University's second-ranking officer effective Jan. 1, 1994.
Stone, the Harry Kalven Jr. Professor in the Law School, will succeed Edward Laumann, who was appointed by former President Hanna Gray and said at the time he would serve during the period of transition in administrations.
"As Dean of the Law School, Geof Stone has maintained and strengthened the quality of the school's faculty and academic programs," Sonnenschein said. "He is committed to the importance of teaching and to nurturing faculty collegiality and scholarship."
The provost is the chief academic officer after the president and is responsible for academic appointments, programs and budgetary priorities.
Janet Rowley, the Blum-Riese Distinguished Service Professor in Medicine, praised Stone's awareness of the University's goals and mission. "Geof has an impressive ability to assess the strengths and focus of a range of programs and evaluate incisively their fit with the University's academic mission," she said. "He knows our strengths and understands what we ought to be doing, and he is able to argue his views with precision and persuasiveness, while at the same time showing genuine sensitivity to the views of his colleagues. I expect that he will be an outstanding provost for the University."
Gerhard Casper, president of Stanford, said, "Geof Stone has all the right values to serve successfully as provost. He is deeply committed to academic quality and the seriousness of the academic enterprise. His capacity to be analytically discriminating, to ask questions and get to the bottom of something, is immensely important, particularly when making academic appointments. He also is very personable and very friendly. He is really a very good choice." Casper was Stone's predecessor as Dean of the Law School and then served as Provost of the University.
Stone is a 1968 graduate of the University of Pennsylvania. He received his J.D. in 1971 from Chicago, where he was editor-in-chief of the Law Review. He was law clerk to Judge J. Skelly Wright of the U.S. Court of Appeals from 1971 to 1972 and to Justice William Brennan of the U.S. Supreme Court from 1972 to 1973. He joined the faculty in 1973 and was appointed Dean of the Law School in 1987. Stone is co-author of the nation's leading constitutional law casebook, and he is editor of the Supreme Court Review.
Laumann is the George Herbert Mead Distinguished Service Professor in Sociology and former Dean of the Social Sciences Division. He is highly regarded for his research on complex organizations, human sexuality and a wide array of other areas of sociology.
"Ed Laumann has set a remarkable standard of university citizenship through his willingness to take on the duties of provost at a time when he was completing two books and conducting a major research project," Sonnenschein said. "As a scholar, a teacher and an administrator, he has made invaluable contributions to this institution. I am grateful to him for his extraordinary service."
Laumann served as Dean of the Social Sciences Division from 1984 to 1992, when he became Provost. From 1981 to 1984, he was Chairman of Sociology. In addition to his work on the sociology of human sexuality and complex organizations, his research interests include social stratification, social-science methodology, political sociology and the analysis of elite groups and community power structure.