Complete lists of current Trustees and 18th century trustees are also available.

College of Philadelphia

University of the State of Pennsylvania

From 1791 to 1880 there was no elected Chairman. Meetings of the Trustees were chaired by one of those present.

University of Pennsylvania

  • His Excellency the Governor of the Commonwealth, President ex officio 1791-present

  • William Pepper, President pro tempore in the absence of the Governor 1880-1894

  • Charles Custis Harrison, President pro tempore 1894-1911, Chairman 1911-1926

  • Josiah Harmar Penniman, Chairman 1926-1928

  • Thomas Sovereign Gates, Chairman, Executive Board 1928-1948, Chairman of Trustees 1945-1948

  • Robert Thompson McCracken, Chairman 1948-1956

  • Alfred Hector Williams, Chairman 1956-1961

  • Wilfred Donnell Gillen, Chairman 1961-1968

  • William Lang Day, Chairman 1968-1973

  • Robert Galbraith Dunlop, Chairman 1974-1974 (acting)

  • Donald Thomas Regan, Chairman 1974 - 1978

  • Paul Fetterolf Miller, Jr., Chairman 1978 - 1986

  • Alvin Varner Shoemaker, Chairman 1986 - 1994

  • Pindaros Roy Vagelos, Chairman 1994 - 1999

  • James S. Riepe, Chairman 1999 - 2009

  • David L. Cohen, Chairman 2009 - present


This history was inspired by the Chronology found in Martin Meyerson's and Dilys Pegler Winegrad's Gladly Learn and Gladly Teach, 1978, but has now been substantially enlarged and interpreted by Mark Frazier Lloyd and Mary D. McConaghy, with the assistance of Michael T. Woods


Portrait print of Benjamin Franklin, first head of Penn's trustees
Benjamin Franklin