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The Carnesale Legacy

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Published Jul 1, 2006 12:00 AM


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The Carnesale Years

1997–2006 Timeline

"Some leaders are bigger than life," says Associate Vice Chancellor for Faculty Diversity Rosina Becerra, who served on the search committee when Harvard provost Albert Carnesale was selected to be UCLA's eighth chancellor in 1997. "With others, you know the leadership is there because you see the results."

And results are what Carnesale, who stepped down June 30 and plans an eventual return to teaching after a one-year sabbatical, delivered. The seasoned diplomat’s quiet leadership positioned others to succeed, preserved and expanded a still-growing reputation for academic excellence, and forged enduring and impactful ties with the broader Los Angeles community.

UCLA is a very different campus from the one Carnesale inherited—and for the better in many different ways. And always, he led with a firm resolve but a gentle hand.

"So much of what Al did was invisible to the user," concludes Executive Vice Chancellor and Provost Daniel M. Neuman. "That's his genius. He's like a brilliant piece of software: You see the effects but not the inner workings."

During the Carnesale era, UCLA:

  • Completed the largest, most successful capital campaign in the history of higher education;
  • Doubled the research dollars garnered annually through competitively awarded contracts and grants, and launched a wave of innovative interdisciplinary endeavors;
  • Transformed the campus from commuter to residential and produced a significant rise in the four-year graduation rate;
  • Established 100 engaged-scholarship partnerships with community organizations;
  • Added one million volumes to the UCLA Library;
  • Won 23 NCAA titles, bringing UCLA’s total to 99;
  • And launched an unprecedented building program.

Read the complete story from UCLA Magazine, "The Carnesale Legacy," (PDF) by Mary Daily with photos by Dan Chavkin.

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