Skip to main content

Atlantic Mourns the Loss of Frank H.T. Rhodes, President Emeritus of Cornell University

Resource type: News

Image result for frank ht rhodes"
Frank H.T. Rhodes on his inauguration day, November 1977. Cornell University File Photo


We mourn the loss of Frank H.T. Rhodes, who passed away Monday, February 3rd, at the age of 93. A long time champion of higher education and philanthropy, Rhodes served as president of Cornell University from 1977 until 1995. Under his leadership Cornell saw tremendous growth in its international reputation. In addition to tripling research funding and leading a successful $1.5 billion capital campaign, Rhodes significantly increased the diversity among students and faculty. During his tenure he worked with Chuck Feeney to establish the Cornell Tradition to provide financial assistance to students and the first of many grants to support the program was made in 1983.

Chuck Feeney, Frank Rhodes and Ed Walsh
From left, Chuck Feeney, Frank H.T. Rhodes and Ed Walsh, founding president of the University of Limerick in Ireland, in 1987. Atlantic’s first and final grants were for The Cornell Tradition, which was conceived by Feeney and Rhodes. Cornell University File Photo

Rhodes remained an active leader in the evolution of the Atlantic Philanthropies’ work in higher education, and  served on the Atlantic Foundation Board  from 1995 until 2008 and was Chair from 2000 until 2008.  To recognize Rhodes’ substantial contributions, two grants were made in his honor: the Frank H.T. Rhodes Class of 1956 Professorship in 2001, and the Frank H.T. Rhodes Fellowships in 2009.

Our thoughts are with his family, friends, and former colleagues.


Learn more:

Frank Rhodes, Cornell’s ninth president, dies at 93

In Memoriam: Frank H.T. Rhodes, 1926-2020


Related Resources


Higher Education

Global Impact:

United States