A distinguished administrator and scholar, Boylan is a developmental biologist who has conducted cancer research throughout her professorial and administrative careers. She received a Ph.D. in zoology from Cornell in 1972 and a B.A. in biological sciences from Wellesley College in 1968.
On the biology faculty at Queens College for 22 years, Boylan joined the provost's office in 1988. She was acting provost in 1992-93 and spent the following year as an American Council on Education Fellow at Pace University. She also holds a position as professor of biology at the Graduate School of CUNY.
"Elizabeth Boylan comes to Barnard with the highest recommendations from both her faculty and administrative colleagues," said Shapiro. "She is a scientist with a broad perspective on the liberal arts. Skilled both as a planner and a manager, she has worked creatively and collegially with faculty, even when faced with limited resources."
Boylan has been a firm and effective advocate for faculty interests at Queens College and CUNY. She has been particularly concerned with the orientation and development of junior faculty members and has brought special energy to faculty research support. Another focus of her attention has been the improvement of undergraduate teaching.
Boylan succeeds Robert A. McCaughey, who stepped down from the position in September 1994, to return full-time to his professorship in history.