Rick Levin

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Richard Charles Levin (b. 1947) is an American economist, who has served as president of Yale University since 1993. He is currently the longest serving university president in the Ivy League.

Born in San Francisco, California, Levin graduated from Stanford University in 1968 with a B.A. in history. He received a Bachelor of Letters in politics and philosophy from Oxford University. He earned his Ph.D. in economics from Yale in 1974. His academic specialties include industrial research and development, intellectual property, and productivity in manufacturing.

Levin became an Assistant Professor of Economics at Yale in 1974 and was elevated to Associate Professor in 1979. He was promoted to Professor of Economics and Management in 1982. In 1992, he was appointed Frederick William Beinecke Professor of Economics. Before becoming president, he served as chairman of the Economics Department and dean of Yale's Graduate School of Arts and Sciences.

On February 6, 2004, Levin was appointed to the Iraq Intelligence Commission, an independent panel convened to investigate U.S. intelligence surrounding the United States' 2003 invasion of Iraq and Iraq's weapons of mass destruction. He had previously served on government panels on baseball economics and the U.S. Postal Service.

Levin is known to be fairly close to President George W. Bush. Levin was one of the president's first guests in the White House during his first term and the president stayed at Levin's house when he received an honorary degree from Yale in 2001.

Since Levin's appointment, three of his provosts, the officer serving directly under him, have gone on to head other universities: Judith Rodin as president of the University of Pennsylvania, Alison Richard as vice-chancellor of the University of Cambridge, and Susan Hockfield as president of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. In addition, Richard Brodhead, the former dean of Yale College, left to become the president of Duke University.

Levin has been praised during his tenure for an unparalleled expansion of the University's endowment and for overseeing an ambitious renovation plan. Yale's admissions standards and academic prestige have generally increased since Levin's appointment. However, he has faced sharp criticism for his role in Yale's notoriously bad labor relations, which culminated in two strikes by the University's two largest unions in 2003.

Levin and his wife, Jane, reside in New Haven, Connecticut. They have four children.

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Preceded by:
Howard R. Lamar

Presidents of Yale

Succeeded by:
(in office)

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