Members of the Class of 1963 were thrilled to welcome Philip J. Hanlon '77 to their 50th Reunion tent last night at the end of his first day as president of Dartmouth.
Hanlon and his wife, Gail Gentes, clapped in appreciation as the Rockapellas sang the line, “welcome President Hanlon, welcome home,” in their version of the pop song “Home.” Class president Larry Bailey ’63 said, “This is our last formal event for Reunion, but it’s the first day for a very special person, the 18th president of Dartmouth College. We are so delighted to have you as president.”
Hanlon said, “It’s a dream of a lifetime to be here and leading the College that’s meant so much to me personally.” In broad strokes, Hanlon outlined some of the strengths of Dartmouth and his aspirations as president, but he summed them up when he said, “It is, arguably and I believe, the number one institution of undergraduate education in this country. And to be number one at anything is really special. And I intend to keep it there.”
To a standing ovation, Hanlon ended his remarks by saying, “I thank you for your loyalty and your generosity. As you stroll around the campus I want you to think of all the success you’ve had because of your Dartmouth education. And I want you to be proud because we’re all proud of you.”
The event with President Hanlon occurred during the one-day extension to the Class of 1963’s 50th Reunion, which also included marching in 2013 Commencement, three class dinners, and a range of lectures and tours.
Among the alumni returning was Bill Price ’63 of Atherton, California, who was visiting Dartmouth for the first time since his graduation. During an architectural walking tour of campus, Price spotted Russell Sage, his former dormitory.
“It’s wonderful to be back,” he said.