Past Presidents - University of Houston
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Past Presidents

For most of its history, the UH System has referred to its chief executive officer as Chancellor and to the CEO of its four universities as President, with two exceptions to this practice. First, between 1956 and 1961, the University of Houston had both a Chancellor and a President, an arrangement never repeated since. Second, when the smaller campuses first became universities, their CEOs were called Chancellors.

After the UH System was created in 1977, the title of UH’s CEO was also changed to Chancellor and the title of the UH System’s CEO was changed to President. The titles were reversed in 1986, and remain so to this day. In 1997, the administrations of the UH System and the University of Houston were combined under one CEO, with the dual title of Chancellor of the UH System and President of the University of Houston.

(*) denotes dual UH System and UH titles and responsibilities

  • Edison D. Oberholtzer, President, Houston Junior College, 1927-34, and President, UH, 1934-50
  • Walter W. Kemmerer (acting), 1950-52, President, 1953
  • Charles F. McElhinney (acting), 1953-54
  • A. D. Bruce, President, 1954-56, and Chancellor, 1956-61
  • Clanton W. Williams, 1956-60
  • Philip G. Hoffman, 1961-77
  • Barry Munitz, 1977-83
  • Hugh Walker (interim), 1982-83
  • Richard L. Van Horn, 1983-89
  • George E. Magner (interim), 1989-90
  • Marguerite Ross Barnett, 1990-92
  • James H. Pickering (acting, interim), 1992, President, 1992-95
  • Glenn A. Goerke, 1995-97
  • Arthur K. Smith*, 1997-03
  • Jay Gogue*, 2003-07
  • John Rudley* (interim), 2007
  • Renu Khator*, 2008-present