Don Michael Randel

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Don Michael Randel (born December 9, 1940) is a prominent American musicologist, the Chair of the Board of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, and a member of the editorial board of Encyclopædia Britannica. He has previously served as the fifth president of The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, twelfth president of the University of Chicago, as Provost of Cornell University, and as Dean of Cornell's College of Arts and Sciences.

In his academic work, Randel specializes in the music of the Middle Ages and the Renaissance. Among musicologists, he is particularly known for his publications on Mozarabic chant, Arabic music theory, and Panamanian folk music. He has served as editor of the third and fourth editions of the Harvard Dictionary of Music, the Harvard Biographical Dictionary of Music, and the Harvard Concise Dictionary of Music and Musicians. He is a triple alumnus of Princeton University, having earned his bachelor's, master's and doctoral degrees in musicology there.

On July 1, 2000, Randel succeeded Hugo F. Sonnenschein as President of the University of Chicago. As President, Randel led the Chicago Initiative, a $2 billion capital campaign to solidify the University's financial footing. He also worked to strengthen the academic work of the University in many areas, from humanities and arts to physical and biological sciences, and he drove efforts to build stronger ties with community and regional organizations.[1] In 2005, Randel received a $500,000 award from the Carnegie Corporation of New York in recognition of these efforts.[2]

On July 26, 2005, Randel announced that he would leave the University of Chicago to assume the presidency of the Mellon Foundation.[3] He was succeeded by President Robert Zimmer on July 1, 2006.


  1. ^ University of Chicago Presidential History
  2. ^ Carnegie Corporation - News
  3. ^ Randel announces he will leave the University of Chicago

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Preceded by
Hugo F. Sonnenschein
President of the University of Chicago
Succeeded by
Robert J. Zimmer
Preceded by
William G. Bowen
President of Andrew W. Mellon Foundation
Succeeded by
Earl Lewis