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Office of the President
Records, 1981 - 1993

(Sheldon Hackney Administration, 1981 - 1993)

220 Cubic ft.
Prepared by Kaiyi Chen
2008 January, revised 2008 July

Access to collections is granted in accordance with the Protocols for the University Archives and Records Center.


The records of the Office of the President for the Sheldon Hackney Administration were transferred to the Archives in seven accessions from 1994 to 2008 (#1994: 3, 1994:13, 1995:22, 1995:60, 1999:3, 1999:5, 2002:120, and 2008).

Access restrictions: in accordance with the "Protocols for the University Archives and Records Center," all administrative records are closed for twenty-five years from the date of their creation.

For personal papers of Sheldon Hackney, see UPT50H123.



The records documenting the administration of Sheldon Hackney represent one series, in three parts (Group I, Group II, and Group III), in the total record group for the Office of the President. This series is arranged alphabetically for all Groups.



Sheldon Hackney served as President of the University of Pennsylvania from 1981 to 1993. During his term, the staff assisting the President was somewhat reduced in size compared to the preceding administration. It was generally composed of the following major members: Executive Director and Associate Director of the Office of the President, Executive Assistant (or Executive Secretary) to the President, and several Assistants to the President on projects assigned by the President.

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The records in this series (in three parts, Group I, Group II and Group III) document the presidential administration of Sheldon Hackney, who served as President from 1981 to 1993, and reflect all major activities taking place on campus during this period.

The representation of the collection can be summarized, though not limited to, ten major categories of administrative activities as follows.

I. Administration at the top level of the University organization. Included in this category are records of the Board of Trustees, its Executive Committee, and other Trustee Committees including the Investment Board; records related to the investment issue in South Africa, records of the University Council, Faculty Senate, Council of Deans, the Senior Planning Group, the President's Advisory Group, the Office of the Secretary, and the Office of Research Administration; as well as the general and correspondence files of the Office of the President and the Office of the Provost,.

II. Policies, programs, events and policy-making activities that affect the entire university. Represented in this category are Affirmative Action, Minorities and Black Presence, 250th Anniversary of the University, Convocation and Commencement, Honors and Awards granted on various occasions, Long range planning and Strategic planning, Policies and Procedures, Task Force on Benefits for Domestic Partners, University Annual Report and President's Report (monthly and quarterly), and the President's Forum.

III. Administration of all schools and all academic and research centers and programs of the University. Included in this category are files of all schools and academic centers of the University and the University health system (under the entry of Health Affairs), files of the Inter-institutional Cooperation Programs and International Programs Office that engage in educational and scholastic exchanges with areas and countries including Africa, China, Egypt, Israel, Italy, Japan, Korea, United Kingdom, former U.S.S.R., as well as records related to the Council of the Ivy Group Presidents. In addition, this category includes records of such major academic accessory departments of the University as the University Archives, the University Libraries, the University Museum, the University Press, the Morris Arboretum, the University Art Collection and the Institute of Contemporary Art

IV. Business aspects of the University administration. Represented in this category are records of the Management Group, which includes Academic Planning and Budget Committee, Capital Council, and Capital needs planning; records of Budget and Finance, files of the Office of the Comptroller, records of the Facilities Management, Facilities Planning, and Facilities Development, records of the Office of Investment and Operational Services, and records related to Safety and Security on campus, Also included in this category are files for the maintenance of the President House.

V. Personnel records. Included in this category are files of Administrative Search for various senior administrative or academic positions, records of Human Resources, Benefit Program, Bio Files, and records of the President's Recruitment Committee, which collected and developed files of recruiting and relocation information.

VI. Records related to Alumni Relations and Development activities. Included in this category are general files of Alumni Relations and the General Alumni Society, files of the deaths of alumni and some non-alumni personnel, files of Gifts, Donations, Gift Prospects, and Foundations that contributed for the development of the University, files of trips made by the President or other major University officials for fund raising purposes, files of Penn's Way, a fund raising program, and records of events held at Eisenlohr Hall, the President House, for the entertainment of donors and other distinguished guests.

VII. Records that concern legal issues and cases of complaints of employees and students. This category includes files of the General Counsel, files of the University Judicial System, files of a dispute between the University and the City of Philadelphia over a Mayor's Scholarship, a Student Problem file, files of the South Africa investment issue, a file related to the Head Injury Clinical Research on Baboons, and a file related to an Open Expression issue over the use of an epithet of "Water Buffalos" (the Jacobowitz Case).

VIII. Records related to student admission and student activities on campus. Within this category are files of Admissions and Financial Aid, Scholarships, files of the Graduate and Professional Student Assembly, files of various fraternities, files of various activities under the general entry of University Life, such as Residential living and WXPN, a student broadcast program run by the students, files related to the Department of Recreation and Inter-collegiate Athletics and the NCAA (National Collegiate Athletic Association), files of the ROTC (Reserved Officers Training Corps), and Student Problem files,

IX. Records that concern the relationships of the University with its neighboring community, with government offices as well as with other academic or civic organizations. The files of community relations include those of such community organizations as the West Philadelphia Partnership, the Greater Philadelphia Chamber of Commerce, the Community College of Philadelphia, Greater Philadelphia Economic Development Partnership, Greater Philadelphia First Corporation, the United Way, and the University City Science Center.

The University's government relations are represented at three levels, namely, relations with the Federal government, relations with the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, and relations with the City of Philadelphia. Included in this sub-group are files of Federal Relations, files of the Department of Educations of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, the Pennsylvania Economic Development Partnership, the University Appropriations from the Commonwealth, the Commonwealth Relations Department at Penn, the Department of Public Education of the City of Philadelphia, the Mayor's Commission on 21st Century, Public Education and the School District of Philadelphia, and the Philadelphia Schools Collaborative.

Relationship with other academic and civic organizations is represented in files of various national and local associations or societies such as American Association for Advancement of Science, American Association of University Professors, American Council of Learned Societies, American Council on Education, American Philosophical Society, Association of American Universities, Commission for Independent Colleges and Universities of Pennsylvania, Consortium on Financing Higher Education, Middle State Association of Colleges and Schools, National Association of Independent Colleges and Universities, Pennsylvania Association of Colleges and Universities, and Philadelphia Orchestra. This sub-group also includes files of accreditation or re-accreditation for a number of universities in which President of the University of Pennsylvania participated.

X. Personal files. This category includes Sheldon Hackney's teaching material for several history courses at the University from 1981 to 1992, his personal correspondence as well as speeches and writings filed either under the Office of the President or with files from his major staff in the President Office.

Apart from the records from the Office of the President per se, this collection is attached at the end of Group II with individual files generated by several major staff of the Office of the President. The major staff represented in this additional category includes, in alphabetical order, Nicholas Constan (Assistant to the President), William Epstein (Assistant to the President), John W. Gould (Executive Director and later Vice President), Linda S. Hyatt (Associate Director of the Office of the President and later Executive Director), D. Bruce Johnstone (Executive Assistant to the President), Stephen P. Steinberg (Assistant to the President), Joan Williamson (Staff Assistant of the Office of the President), and Paul Zingg (Assistant to the President). Similar files from the offices of major staff of the President Office including William G. Owen, Special Assistant to the President for Special Liaisons,and Janet Dwyer, Business Administrator of the Office of the President, have been filed alphabetically in Group I and Group III of the series.

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