Former U.S. Rep. Chris Gibson named Siena’s new president

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LOUDONVILLE, N.Y. (NEWS10) — Siena announced former U.S. Rep Chris Gibson has been named the college’s 12th president on Friday. He succeeds Margaret E. Madden, Ph.D. who has been serving as Siena’s interim president since 2019.

Gibson, a Ph.D., decorated military veteran, author and scholar will begin a five-year term beginning July 1, 2020. Gibson’s appointment was approved by the College’s Board of Trustees unanimously during a special session.

“The entire campus community looks forward to working with him to build on the College’s current successes and move strategically into the future,” said Siena Board of Trustees Chairman John. F. Murray. “His dedication to liberal arts education and Siena’s Franciscan values, coupled with his leadership experience as an elected member of Congress, military officer, and respected scholar will be tremendous assets as a higher education executive,” Murray said. 

“I am deeply grateful to the Board for the high privilege of serving as Siena’s next president, and I am sincerely humbled to have been appointed as the College’s first permanent lay leader,” said Gibson. “Siena played an instrumental role in shaping my values and ideals, and I am forever indebted to the faculty and staff, including the many friars who have been so influential in my life,” Gibson said.

Gibson who graduated from Siena in 1986 with a B.A. in history represented NY District 19 in the U.S. House of Representatives from 2011-2017. He is the Stanley Kaplan Distinguished Visiting Professor of American Foreign Policy at Williams College, a member of the Hoover Institution’s Working Group on the Role of Military History in Contemporary Conflict.

He is also a visiting fellow with the Catholic University’s Center for the Study of Statesmanship, and a member of the Editorial Advisory Committee of the Bipartisan Review, a project with Cornell University’s Institute of Politics, Siena College said. 

Gibson has written two books, is a 29-year decorated military veteran and served four combat tours in Iraq and was part of the peacekeeping NATO mission in Kosovo. Gibson lives in Kinderhook with his wife and their three children.

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