Inaugural History

Ellis L. Phillips Jr.

President, Ithaca College, 1970-1975

Ellis Phillips was inaugurated on April 7, 1971. His inauguration was marked by an academic festival and a ceremony complete with visiting delegates, the appearance of a presidential medallion, and multimedia presentations.

The logo designed for the inauguration was half sun and stars, half brain, with the words "Man in Control" in between. The inauguration program described the logo as follows:

"From the beginning, man has searched the world and the stars for the ultimate answers to his destiny. He has developed the tools and knowledge to plumb the earth and traverse the planets. He is beginning to comprehend that the ultimate answers are not in the stars but in training the mind of man to live in harmony with the natural world in which he is the most intelligent component.

"Today symbolizes the commencement of a new era in the history of Ithaca College. We begin this new era aware of the challenges and responsibilities of the present and the future. We celebrate with an Academic Festival because we realize that education is the key to man's destiny -- the means through which man can learn to control himself and nature to achieve a better world."

David Laub, chair of the College's board of trustees, invested Ellis Phillips with the new presidential medallion. The program explained the significance of the medallion:

"To symbolize the authority conferred by the Board of Trustees upon the President as the chief administrative officer of the College, the President is vested by the Chairman of the Board with the Presidential Medallion. The Medallion is in the form of the College Seal, cast in silver and suspended from a silver bar bearing the name of the President. To symbolize the continuity of the institution through its presidential leadership, the names and dates of the previous presidents are engraved on silver bars affixed to the chain which supports the Medallion. . . . The President wears the medallion as the emblem of his office at official ceremonies where academic regalia is required."