Gerhard Casper
President: 1992-2000

Gerhard Casper was provost of the University of Chicago when he became the university's ninth president on Sept. 1, 1992. About 7,000 people attended Casper's inauguration in Frost on Oct. 2, including Lyman and Kennedy, who came as "emeritus bookends," according to Kennedy. Drama Department senior lecturer Pat Ryan read from the writings of Jane Stanford, and guests were entertained by a concert of carillon bells -- something that Hennessy will have to forgo because the bells of Hoover Tower have not yet returned from a renovatory jaunt to Belgium.

Former president Donald Kennedy, center, talks to Casper during Casper's inauguration.

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Casper's inaugural speech stressed the importance of academic freedom. "Only in one respect must the university be rigidly conservative," he said. "It must protect the openness, the rigor, the seriousness of its work in education and research." Following the ceremony, guests were invited to visit Memorial Church -- open for the first time since the 1989 Loma Prieta earthquake. Casper's reception in the Quad began with a mariachi band and ended with a two-hour-long receiving line of well-wishers. Casper's wife, Regina, had to wear gloves to protect her hands because they were sore from greeting so many people the previous day.

Hennessy's upcoming inauguration will include the pageantry associated with earlier installations. About 9,500 people -- faculty, staff, students, alumni, local government officials and college presidents -- are expected to attend the ceremony and a reception afterward in the Quad. Hennessy's taste for jazz will be reflected in the program -- the Stanford Jazz Workshop Ensemble will perform several times and, at the president's request, will play "Fanfare for the Common Man" by Aaron Copland after the processional is completed. Casper, Kennedy and Lyman, who will participate in the program, will look on as the president's crimson robe is presented to its third wearer. The jazz ensemble and the Stanford Chamber Chorale will perform a piece of music composed for the event by alumnus and lecturer Giancarlo Aquilanti. The piece, "The Call of the West," is based on a quote from Jane Stanford. Afterward, guests will be invited to join Hennessy; his wife, Andrea; Isaac Stein, chairman of the Board of Trustees; and his wife, Madeleine, for a reception that will feature a variety of student performing groups and that long receiving line.

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