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Jonathan Veitch President of Occidental College in LA

Jonathan Veitch was born in 1959 and resides in the Los Angeles area. He is currently the president of the prestigious Occidental College in LA, where he has been for the past six years. He was elected president of the campus in July 2009, following provisional president Robert Skotheim. The college had had a difficult time and changed leadership many times before Veitch took the helm. Previously he was a professor at the “University of Wisconsin.” Though he gained recognition for being a major influence at a fabulous institution, he also achieved some notoriety from writing the book “American Superrealism.” His goal was to change things at the college, including the improvement of relations and expanding the campus to be able to accommodate more students.

Destined for greatness, he got his first degree from Stanford University. After his undergraduate degree, he went on to further his education, by receiving a doctorate from Harvard in American Civilization. Because he holds both degrees in history and literature, his goal has always been to focus on the expansion of the campus body and their liberal arts program. He has achieved major success in the short six years that he has been in this position. The student body has increased more than 1,300 students, but there is no expansion plan at this time. Due to funding cuts and rough economic times, expansion will be delayed.

The prestigious position he obtained was not by luck. Not only has he worked hard, but he also comes from a prominent family in the LA area. His step-grandfather is Alan Ladd, the famous actor. His father, John Veitch, is the President of Columbia Pictures. Though he worked hard to obtain his stance in life, he also had the help of a prominent family to assist.

He took a brief sabbatical from his position as dean so that he and his family could move into the presidential home on campus. He and his wife Sarah have 3 children together. His plans are to be in this home for the next decade. With his recent celebration of turning 50 years old, and his move, things are continuing to look up for the dedicated career man.

The future of the college is at his control. He is not just another president; he has put his heart and soul into his work here. He has a personal interest in the college and has vested much time and effort. He had a brief role as president at the New School’s Eugene Lang College in New York City. This gave him the foundation he needed to go on to bigger and better things at Occidental College.

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