Top of the Lists: Four Wanted Men


August 31, 1970, p. 70

Thousands of names are now being considered by the scores of colleges and universities searching for presidents. And inevitably, some of the same names appear on list after list. Three men upon whom a number of schools have their eye, are already the provosts -- or chief academic officers -- of major universities. They are Richard Lyman of Stanford (who has been acting president there since Kenneth Pitzer resigned in June), William Bowen of Princeton and Charles H. Taylor Jr. of Yale. Among businessmen, Peter G. Peterson, 44, chairman of the board of Bell & Howell, often makes the "most wanted" list.

But the four names that probably crop up most often when search committees discuss their ideal candidates are these:

John Gardner, 57, president of the National Urban Coalition, who recently announced plans to form Common Cause, a lobbying organization intended to represent the public. As president of the Carnegie Corporation, Gardner sparked far-reaching educational innovations during the post-sputnik years. And though nominally a Republican, he served as HEW Secretary in the Johnson Administration. Perhaps because he seems the quintessential liberal Establishmentarian, Gardner probably tops more search lists than any other man.

Ramsey Clark, 42, son of former Supreme Court Justice Tom Clark and himself a former Attorney General. Now a Washington lawyer, Clark has been active enough in social and civil libertarian causes to win an encomium from New Left Journalist Jack Newfield. Like Gardner, Clark has a following that would like to run him for President of the U.S., too.

Nicholas Johnson, 35, the most liberal -- and the brashest -- member of the Federal Communications Commission. Born in Iowa and educated at the University of Texas, personable Nick Johnson has taught law at the University of California at Berkeley.

McGeorge Bundy, 51, has pursued three careers with immense distinction. As an academic, Bundy taught at Harvard and was dean of its faculty of arts and sciences. As a crisis manager, he was national security adviser to Presidents Kennedy and Johnson. And, in his current post as president of the Ford Foundation, he represents an important force for social and educational change. But because of his critical role in expanding U.S. involvement in Vietnam, Bundy perhaps lacks one qualification of supreme importance -- appeal to students.
[emphasis supplied]