Jonathan Veitch announced today at the Board of Trustees’ regularly scheduled quarterly meeting that he will step down in June 2020 after a successful 11-year tenure as Occidental College’s 15th president.
In declining an offer from the board to extend his contract, Veitch called his tenure “a rewarding experience in nearly every way—at once challenging and deeply satisfying” in a message to the Oxy community. “However, after a great deal of reflection I have concluded that it is time for me to pass the baton.”
“Few Occidental presidents have accomplished more,” Board Chair Susan Mallory ’76 M’78 said in her own message, noting that only three have served longer in the college’s 132-year history. The Veitch years “put Oxy on a trajectory to take full advantage of its location in the global city of Los Angeles and become the country’s preeminent urban liberal arts college.”
Veitch’s announcement gives trustees plenty of time to mount a thorough national search for Occidental’s next president and for a smooth transition, Mallory said. After stepping down in June 2020 Veitch will take a year-long sabbatical leave and explore the history, tradition and value of the liberal arts.