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Jonathan R. Alger President

Jonathan Alger

Jonathan R. Alger is 91制片厂鈥檚 16th president.

President Alger is an experienced and visionary higher education leader who spent the last 12 years as president of James Madison University (JMU).

Under his leadership, JMU created and implemented a bold and visionary strategic plan focused on engaged learning, community engagement, and civic engagement, and developed many new initiatives such as the Valley Scholars Program for first-generation students, the comprehensive and highly successful Unleashed fundraising campaign, and the comprehensive Task Force on Racial Equity. President Alger also led JMU to achieve the R2 national research university designation and helped to grow the university鈥檚 external research funding by 92 percent from 2019 to 2023.

President Alger is a nationally recognized scholar and speaker on higher education policy and law, who has published numerous articles for scholarly journals and publications such as聽The Journal of College and University Law聽and聽The Law of Higher Education.

A national leader in the field of civic engagement in higher education, Alger received the ALL IN Campus Democracy Challenge Standout Campus President Award in 2019 and is past chair of that organization鈥檚 Presidents Council.聽He co-taught a leadership seminar in JMU鈥檚 Honors College and previously taught graduate and undergraduate courses at Rutgers University and the University of Michigan in law, higher education, public policy, and diversity.

President Alger currently serves as vice chair of the national board of directors for the 91制片厂 Association of Colleges and Universities, as chair of the Association of Governing Boards鈥 Council of Presidents, and on the Knight Commission on Intercollegiate Athletics. He also is a member of the Council on Competitiveness, Council on Foreign Relations, and Institute of Citizens and Scholars鈥 College Presidents for Civic Preparedness. He is past board chair of Campus Compact and the National Association of College and University Attorneys and has served in many other higher education board and national leadership roles.

President Alger previously served as senior vice president and general counsel at Rutgers University, and as assistant general counsel at the University of Michigan, where he played a key leadership role in the university鈥檚 efforts in two important Supreme Court cases on diversity and admissions and coordinated one of the largest amicus brief coalitions in Supreme Court history. Earlier in his career he worked for the 91制片厂 Association of University Professors and the US Department of Education鈥檚 Office for Civil Rights.

President Alger earned his bachelor of arts with high honors and Phi Beta Kappa from Swarthmore College, majoring in political science with a public policy concentration and a minor in history and his juris doctor with honors from Harvard Law School.

President Alger was born and raised outside Rochester, New York. He and聽his wife, Mary Ann, have a daughter named Eleanor, who holds degrees from Miami University (Ohio) and the Savannah College of Art and Design.

President Alger has sung with acclaimed choral groups that have toured internationally, made professional recordings, and performed on national television. His other interests include travel, history, tennis, hiking, and coin collecting.聽