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University President Lee Bollinger will continue to lead Columbia until at least 2022, the board of trustees announced on Monday.
The trustees have extended Bollinger's term for four additional years—the second time they have extended his contract. In 2014 he accepted the board's request that he continue to serve as president for two additional years. Monday's announcement cements Bollinger's term as a two decade-long presidency, which will make him the longest serving president currently at an Ivy League School.
During Bollinger's tenure, the trustees have consistently praised his leadership, and compensated him accordingly—Bollinger is currently the highest paid president of a private university, earning $4.6 million in 2015.
"We believe Lee's compelling intellectual vision and his record of fiscal management and fundraising success have made Columbia the most dynamic place in higher education," Trustee Chair Jonathan Schiller said in the press release. "We want to continue without pause this extraordinary forward momentum in the years ahead."
In his statement, Schiller pointed to the University's achievements during Bollinger's leadership, underlining the creation of the eight global centers, the University's commitment of $85 million over the past decade to hire faculty from underrepresented groups, and Columbia's expansion into Manhattanville.
The first buildings on the Manhattanville campus—the Jerome L. Greene Science Center and the Lenfest Center for the Arts—are expected to open in the year ahead. The extension of his term will allow Bollinger to oversee the completion of the later phases of the expansion, considered to be one of the cornerstones of his presidency.
"It is, for me, the highest privilege to be able to play a role in one of the great eras in Columbia's long and distinguished history," Bollinger said in the press release. "Above all, however, what captures my complete dedication is the still-to-be-realized potential of this extraordinary institution to benefit humanity in new as well as traditional ways, but always through the core mission of advancing knowledge and understanding, educating the next generation of youth and serving the public good."