Robert J. Henle, S.J., President of Georgetown, 1969-1976
Georgetown College (1789-1815)
Fr. R.J. Henle, S.J., was inaugurated as Georgetown’s 45th President in 1969. He had previously served for ten years as academic vice president of St. Louis University. Under Fr. Henle’s leadership, the University completed a multi-million construction program and the School of Medicine expanded to the second largest private medical school in the county. His most notable achievement, however, was probably in returning the University to a position of financial stability. When Fr. Henle became President, the University budget, in the red for the fifth consecutive year, had a projected deficit of $1.8 million. He noted in 'A Personal Report: Georgetown University, 1969-1976' that “To put it . . . bluntly, without money, no educational mission; without an educational mission, no University. That’s how simple the matter was. I saw no choice except to accept the obligation of financing the University as my immediate and first concern when coming to Georgetown.' By the time of his resignation in 1976, he had balanced a budget that had grown to $191 million a year.
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