Columbia University New York, N.Y. 10027 Office of Public Information (212) 854-5573
Alan J. Stone, an experienced professional in Federal legislation, public policy, advocacy and communications, has been appointed Vice President for Public Affairs at Columbia University, President George Rupp announced today.
He will be responsible for the work of Columbia's Office of Public Information and Communications and its Office of Government Relations and Community Affairs. His appointment continues the building of a new senior management team by Dr. Rupp, who became Columbia's 18th president in 1993. His appointment is effective September 15.
Mr. Stone, 51, has been legislative director to a U.S. Senator, staff director to two Congressional Committees and counsel to a third. Deeply grounded in public policy, he is best known for directing the Senate Select Committee on Nutrition and Human Needs in the 1970's, during which the national commitment to anti-hunger efforts grew dramatically, and for putting together the House Select Committee on Children, Youth, and Families, a new committee charged with developing policies to help children and families adapt to a rapidly changing world. He has wide experience in press relations, politics, and communication strategy. An advisor and speechwriter for foundations and civic and political organizations, Mr. Stone joined the Clinton campaign in Little Rock as a senior speechwriter, a role he continued at the White House.
In making the announcement, Dr. Rupp said: "Alan Stone comes to us with an impressive range of experience in legislative affairs, in public policy and advocacy and in media relations and communication. He will provide leadership in assuring Columbia's commitment to public service and effective participation in the community and at all levels of government, and he will also bring new direction and energy to the University's communications efforts."
Mr. Stone said: "I am very excited about coming to Columbia. This is an extraordinary place. The record of excellence, the commitment to the core curriculum and to teaching young people, the deep intellectual strength of the faculty, the world-class research that continues to unlock the mysteries of science, the sense of community and partnership with New York City--all make Columbia great and unique and a leader.
"I see my job as helping to preserve and enhance these strengths in the face of great change in the economy and in government. Columbia is situated to make change its friend. But our efforts to understand and capitalize on shifting policies must be aggressive. It's a great challenge, but also a great opportunity. I'm very much looking forward to it."
Donald Baer, White House director of communications who worked closely with Mr. Stone, said in an interview: "Alan Stone served President Clinton with great vision, talent and integrity. We have felt his loss at the White House, but our loss is Columbia University's gain. His commitment to the values that underlie the best in education across America and the lessons he has learned in his life will help him to convey Columbia University's achievements and message very well. He will be a profoundly powerful voice in the fight to keep the doors of higher education open to every American who wants to take responsibility for his or her own life."
Alan James Stone was born June 10, 1944, in Chicago and earned his B.A. at Miami University in Ohio in 1966 and his law degree at George Washington University in 1969. In 1970 he served as a VISTA attorney in Worcester, Mass. In 1971 he received a Reginald Heber Smith Community Law Fellowship and opened a rural legal services office in Montrose, Colo. Between 1973 and 1979 he worked for and eventually oversaw the work of the Senate Nutrition Committee under chairman George McGovern, developing several anti-hunger initiatives, including the Women, Infants and Children program (WIC). After a year as special assistant to the administrator of the Agency for International Development, advising on international health and hunger and children's issues, he became counsel of the Senate Democratic Policy Committee under Senator Robert C. Byrd, recommending and helping to implement legislative strategies for Democratic members of the U.S. Senate from 1981 to 1983.
For the next four years, Mr. Stone served as staff director and counsel to the House committee on children and families under chairman George Miller. From 1987 to 1989 he was chief speechwriter for the National Education Association and from 1988 to 1992, senior advisor to the Carnegie Foundation on Teaching. He assisted the foundation's president, Ernest Boyer, in the preparation of books on children's issues, including Ready To Learn.
He was senior advisor and chief speechwriter for Americans for Harkin in 1992 and a Presidential speechwriter from 1993 until recently.