Occidental College’s 15th President: Jonathan Veitch

Jonathan Veitch has been known as many things: professor, published author, Dean, Associate Provost and now President of Occidental College in Los Angeles. Jonathan Veitch graduated from Stanford University with his bachelor’s degree in English and American Literature and went on to complete his doctoral degree from Harvard in History of American Civilizations. After graduating, he went on to teach in the English department at the University of Wisconsin, eventually becoming an associate professor of English, before moving on to join the New School. At the New School’s Eugene Lang College, Veitch taught courses in cultural history, American history, and American film leading up to his advancement to Dean in 1994. It should also be mentioned that while teaching at the University of Wisconsin, he published his award-winning book American Superrealism: Nathanael West and the Politics of Representation in the 1930s.

In July 2009, Jonathan Veitch became the president of Occidental College taking over for Reobert Skotheim who was serving as interim President. While at Occidental, Veitch was awarded a $5 million donation to renovate Johnson Hall which was one of the three original building on Occidental’s campus. He has made various contributions during his time as President such as the 1-megawatt ground mounted solar array that is able to generate approximately 11 % of the College annual electric usage.

His family currently lives in the Wallis Anneberg President’s House on the Occidental campus. He married Sarah Ann Baxter Kersh in December of 1992 and they have 3 children. Being born and raised in Los Angeles, it will be exciting to see where Veitch’s next step will be.