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Seymour, Thaddeus


biographical statement

Thaddeus Seymour came to Rollins in 1978 as the twelfth president of the college. During his twelve-year tenure, he not only transformed the school through fund-raising efforts, but also enhanced the academic excellence of its liberal arts education and strengthened its relationship with the local community.

Seymour was born on June 29, 1928, in New York City. His father was Whitney North Seymour, a well-known attorney and president of the American Bar Association. Seymour attended Princeton and the University of California at Berkley as an undergraduate. From there, he went to the University of North Carolina, studied 18th century English literature, and received his master’s degree and PhD Seymour began his academic career as an English professor at Dartmouth, and five years later became Dean of the College. Before coming to Rollins, Seymour served as president of Wabash College in Indiana for nine years.

While at Rollins, Seymour led the College’s centennial celebration, rededicated the Walk of Fame, raised funds for the construction of the Olin Library and the Cornell Social Sciences Building, reinstated the Fox Day holiday, and actively contributed to various community activities. He served as chairman, vice-chairman, and committee member of numerous academic and civic organizations. Throughout his life, Seymour has been widely known not only as dean and college president, but also as an inspiring teacher, a caring counselor, a supportive friend, a charming magician and a leading citizen of the community.

Upon his retirement in 1990, Seymour received an honorary degree from Rollins College. He has also been recognized with honorary doctorates from Wilkes College (Pa.), Butler University, and Indiana State University. In 1994, he received the Citizens Award from the Sullivan Committee. Three years later, in 1997, Seymour and his wife, Polly, were named Winter Park’s Citizens of the Year, in recognition of their continued service to the community.

Found in 1 Collection or Record:

Seymour, Thaddeus Presidential Records, 1978-1990

Identifier: AR-Seymour
Scope and Contents The records of Dr. Thaddeus Seymour, 12th president of Rollins College, include his inauguration, correspondence, general college affairs, work with faculty, students, staff, alumni and the Board of Trustees, buildings, Rollins centennial celebration, his involvement with educational organizations and community service over his tenure of 12 years from 1978 to 1990. As these materials were periodically transferred by the Office of the President, information on a single topic may be found in...
Dates: Created: 1978 - 2011; Other: Majority of material found in 1978-1990