Anne Houtman is Earlham's New President
July 01, 2019
Anne M. Houtman, a distinguished educator, scientist, author, and higher education leader, became the 20th president of Earlham College and the Earlham School of Religion on July 1, 2019.
Houtman comes to Earlham from Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology, where she served as Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs. She holds a doctorate from the University of Oxford in Zoology and a master’s degree in Anthropology from UCLA. She earned her bachelor of arts degree from Pomona College. Houtman is a Quaker, and she is the first woman to serve as President of Earlham.
Houtman is married to Will Prouty. She has two adult children, Abigail and Benjamin.
She was selected through a national search in which College trustees, faculty from both the College and Earlham School of Religion, administrative staff, students, and alumni participated.
David Stump, chair of the Earlham Board of Trustees, said that Houtman was the consensus choice of the trustees who met in February to receive the comments and recommendations of the search committee chaired by Robert Graham, an Earlham trustee and alumnus.
“Earlham was very fortunate to have attracted a large number of well-qualified candidates to be its next leader. Anne stood out because so much of her experience and beliefs match well with the values and mission of our College and will encourage contributions to Earlham’s future success from all its constituencies,” said Stump. “As a leader in higher education, she is well qualified to guide the College in these especially challenging times for liberal arts colleges. Her emphasis on collaboration and transparency in planning and decision-making will be important to the effectiveness of Earlham’s shared governance.”
The search committee also was “impressed with her success in obtaining gifts and grants to support a number of programs she helped to initiate and manage in her current and previous positions,” noted Graham, the search committee chair.
Houtman said she was attracted to Earlham for several reasons, including the quality of its faculty and its commitment to diversity, as well as its strength in experiential programs and joint student-faculty research and creative activity. The Earlham School of Religion, a Quaker seminary offering master’s degrees, also will be led by Houtman.
"I am honored and delighted to have the opportunity to serve as president of Earlham College and the Earlham School of Religion. As a liberally educated scientist and as a Quaker, I consider this position a once-in-a-lifetime match for my skills, experience and values. I have for many years been impressed with Earlham's clear commitment to educate contributory citizens and lifelong learners in a collegial and inclusive environment. I look forward to working with faculty, staff, students and alumni to help the College and ESR meet their challenges and fulfill that inspiring mission."
Previously, Houtman served as dean of the School of Natural Sciences, Mathematics and Engineering at California State University Bakersfield, and as Head and Professor at the Thomas H. Gosnell School of Life Sciences at Rochester Institute of Technology. Earlier in her career she held faculty positions at California State University Fullerton, Soka University of America and Knox College. She has authored numerous textbooks and articles on scientific and pedagogical topics. Houtman is currently a trustee of the College Board.
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Earlham College, a national liberal arts college located in Richmond, Indiana, is a "College That Changes Lives." We expect our students to be fully present: to think rigorously, value directness and genuineness, and actively seek insights from differing perspectives. The values we practice at Earlham are rooted in centuries of Quaker tradition, but they also constitute the ideal toolkit for contemporary success. We rank 7th nationally by Princeton Review for Best Classroom Experience and 22nd by U.S. News and World Report for commitment to undergraduate teaching.
Brian Zimmerman is director of media relations at Earlham College. He can be reached at 765-983-1256 and firstname.lastname@example.org.