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New Year, New President

President Kington and some of the students at NSO 2010

President Raynard Kington, M.D., Ph.D., had a special bond with his audience during New Student Orientation this fall. In one of his first official acts as president of Grinnell College, he faced a sea of faces and explained “You and I are beginning a grand adventure at the same time.”

In a whirlwind weekend, Kington ended his tenure at the National Institutes of Health (NIH) on a Friday, flying in to welcome the incoming class of 2014 the next day. Over the next several weeks, he and his family will be settling into the community and college life.

In an early act, Kington will open the 2010-11 academic year with a Scholars Convocation on Thurs., Sept. 2 at 11 a.m. in Herrick Chapel. He will discuss “Racial and Ethnic Disparities in Health in the U.S.: Patterns, Causes, Trends,” reviewing the scientific evidence on racial and ethnic disparities and the challenges for intervention.

Grinnell College welcomes our newest president.

This was originally published in The Grinnell Magazine, Fall 2010.

Grinnell College Welcomes a New President

On Aug. 1, 2010, Raynard S. Kington, M.D., Ph.D., M.B.A., will become the 13th president of Grinnell College. When Kington was introduced to a packed Herrick Chapel on Feb. 17, the response was remarkable in its passion and its volume. Photos by Jim Heemstra.

This article appeared as a web extra for The Grinnell Magazine, Summer 2010.

Kington with organ pipes in background
Herrick Chapel, which has served as a setting for Grinnell’s defining moments for more than a century, overflowed with joy (and Grinnellians) for the presidential announcement.
David White in pew, Grinnell College banner in background
David White ’90, chair of the Grinnell College Board of Trustees, introduced Kington to the standing-room-only audience.
Kington at podium, smiling. Stained glass in the background
Kington received three standing ovations from the happy crowd in Herrick.
Peter and Emerson playing quietly with toys in pew
As most parents would agree, keeping a small child quiet in church can be challenging. Kington’s partner, Dr. Peter Daniolos, entertains the couple’s older son Emerson during the announcement ceremony.
Daniolos watches Kington while Emerson looks to side.
Emerson's attention wandered, but he would soon be on the move.
Kington motioning Emerson to join him at podium, Daniolos encourages Emerson to go
“C’mon up!”
Kington continues to address crowd, with hand touching Emerson on the top of the head
Emerson and his father face the audience together.
Emerson shows drawing over the top of the podium rail, while Kington continues to address the audience
Emerson appears to be thinking, "Hmmmm … what happens if I drop this over the side?"
Kington smiles, turned to look over back of pew, with Grinnell College banner in the background
A sunny day greeted Kington for the presidential announcement, complemented by a warm reception from Grinnellians in Herrick.
Kington talks to Emerson while others are gathered around
Jeff Phelps ’71 (right) greets the new president and his partner, while Seth Allen (second from left), dean of admission and financial aid, waits to speak with the new president.
Daniolos holds Emerson, both in coats, against snowy campus. Emerson smiles as he holds construct of tape and paper.
Daniolos and Emerson wore big smiles as they walked to lunch at the Joe Rosenfield ’25 Center.
Fuson walks next to Kington, who is pushing a stroller filled with child supplies
Trustee Hal Fuson ’67 walks with Kington on their way to the Rosenfield Center.
Kington walks through the dining hall tables with Emerson walking under his arm
Kington got a round of applause from students eating lunch when he and his family walked into the dining hall.
Kington raising hands before him at front of Herrick Chapel
Raynard S. Kington, M.D. — Grinnell’s 13th president.

Presidential Announcement

Wed, 2010-02-17 02:24 | By Anonymous (not verified)

Grinnell College Presidential Announcement

Dear Fellow Grinnellians,

On behalf of the Board of Trustees, I am delighted to announce that Raynard S. Kington, M.D, M.B.A., Ph.D., the deputy director of the National Institutes of Health (NIH) and a leading scientific researcher on the role of social factors as determinants of health, will become Grinnell College’s 13th president on August 1, 2010. He will succeed Russell K. Osgood, who has ably served as Grinnell’s president for 12 years and announced his retirement in May of 2009.

Dr. Kington was the unanimous recommendation of our 14-member Presidential Search Committee and was unanimously elected by the trustees. The nine-month, nationwide search process was exhaustive. Our pool of more than 200 candidates was extraordinarily accomplished and diverse, and included sitting college Presidents and Deans, university Provosts and leading intellectuals in a variety of academic disciplines and professional fields. However, Dr. Kington’s remarkable profile made him a compelling candidate from the start. Few individuals possess the unique blend of successful experiences in public policy, higher education, research, management and rigorous intellectual achievement that he now brings to Grinnell.

Dr. Kington’s record of achievement is exceptional. He was elected to the prestigious Institute of Medicine of the National Academy of Sciences in 2006, where he currently serves as the chair of the Section on Administration of Health Services, Education, and Research. His wide range of responsibilities have included serving as associate director of NIH for Behavioral and Social Sciences Research and acting director of the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism. Prior to NIH, he was a division director at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, where he led the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey, one of the nation’s largest studies to assess the health of the American people. He has been a senior scientist at the RAND Corporation and was the Co-Director of the Charles R. Drew University/RAND Center on Health and Aging. He has served as an Assistant Professor of Medicine at UCLA and as a Visiting Associate Professor of Medicine at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine.

Dr. Kington’s credentials are only one part of his story, however. The trustees also took great interest in those attributes that elicited such clear and strong endorsements from his peers and colleagues from around the country. He is known for his inclusive management style, his commitment to a clear and thoughtful decision making process, and his quick and extraordinary grasp of complex issues. He has an extensive track record in excellent financial management. He has a reputation for encouraging constructive debate on critical issues and for working easily in a collaborative team environment with people at all levels of responsibility. His personal and professional lives are rooted in a profound commitment to social responsibility. He is clearly focused on the connection between academic excellence and our graduates’ ability to go into the world and transform it. He was explicit in his desire to embrace Grinnell’s heritage of social justice and equality, and to understand how to translate such a mission into today’s global, entrepreneurial environment.

We believe the combination of these qualities will enable Dr. Kington, working with our community of current and future scholars, to inspire our College to even greater heights, and that Grinnell’s best days lie ahead of us. However, we must remember that no individual is an island, and that even the most talented among us will need the support of our entire community. As Grinnellians, we are profoundly connected to our traditions and history, but we are now called to reinforce that connection to our present and our future. Dr. Kington’s appointment as our next President represents a wonderful opportunity for us to take stock of our institutional success and current challenges, and to reinvigorate our commitment to seeing the full potential of Grinnell College unfold on the world’s stage.

In recruiting Grinnell’s 13th president in 164 years, we owe a deep debt of gratitude to the efforts of our tireless Presidential Search Committee. Under the leadership of Paul Risser ’61, the Committee, including representatives from the trustees, faculty, administration, alumni and student body, established a rigorous set of criteria and an ambitious timeline. With the help of the Isaacson Miller search firm, the committee has succeeded in recruiting a visionary individual who embraces our values and possesses the unique combination of qualities that will inspire the entire Grinnell community and advance our far-reaching institutional goals.

Dr. Kington, his partner, Peter T. Daniolos M.D., a child psychiatrist at Children’s National Medical Center and George Washington University, and their two young children plan to move to Grinnell during the summer and make the president’s residence at the College their home.

We are confident that Dr. Kington is the right person to lead Grinnell College into our bright and bold future. Please join me in welcoming him to the Grinnell community and giving him and his family our enthusiastic support and encouragement.


David P. White ’90, Chair of the Board of Trustees