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Former University professor and current President of the University of Pennsylvania Amy Gutmann has had her contract extended to 2022, which will make her the longest-serving president in the school's history.

Prior to her appointment at Penn, Gutmann served as Provost at the University and was also the Laurance S. Rockefeller University Professor of Politics, teaching at the University from 1976 to 2004. She was the Founding Director of the University Center for Human Values, which works to foster teaching, research, and discussion of important ethical issues in private and public life through curriculum at the University. Gutmann also served as Dean of the Faculty and as Academic Advisor to the President before leaving to become the eighth President of the University of Pennsylvania in 2004.

According to The Daily Pennsylvanian, Gutmann’s contract was scheduled to end in 2019, but her tenure will now run to June 30, 2022. The extension will make Gutmann’s total time as Penn’s president 18 years, one year more than the time served by the former longest-serving president, Gaylord Harnwell. The news was announced Tuesday morning by Penn Board of Trustees Chair David L. Cohen in an email to the Penn community.

“Since assuming the Presidency in 2004, Amy has done a superb job leading our University forward, and her outstanding leadership of Penn has been nothing short of transformational,” the message read. “The Trustees strongly support her inspiring vision for Penn and our broader community.”

“When she was chosen in 2004 to lead our University, Amy was the Provost at Princeton and already a stellar interdisciplinary scholar, teacher, and leader in academe,” added Cohen, according to Penn News. “The selection of Amy as Penn’s 8th President has proven to be one of the best decisions ever made in American higher education. We believe Amy is the best university president in the country. As a Board, we have an obligation to sustain Penn’s success, and we can imagine no better way to do that than to keep Amy Gutmann at the helm. We are simply delighted that she has agreed to continue to bring her energy, passion, and strategic vision to Penn as our President.”

The message also listed over a dozen major accomplishments during Gutmann’s presidency: “increasing the undergraduate financial aid budget by 155 percent, creating 200 new endowed professorships, raising more than $5 billion for Penn, creating the President’s Engagement Prize and the President’s Innovation Prize, building the Singh Center for Nanotechnology, the New College House, Perry World House and opening the Penn Wharton China Center.”

“It has been an absolute honor to serve as Penn’s president for the past 12 years, and I am excited about all that we can accomplish together in the next six,” said Gutmann, according to Penn News. “I am constantly grateful for the strong support that our Trustees provide and deeply appreciate their confidence in my efforts to make a Penn education the very best in the world.”

Gutmann’s daughter, Abigail Gutmann Doyle, has been teaching at the University’s Department of Chemistry since 2008.

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