A Legacy of Leadership: The Chancellors and Presidents of Syracuse University

Nancy Cantor

Term of Office: August 2004 – December 2013
Inauguration Date: 5 November 2004

Nancy Cantor was selected by the Board of Trustees as Syracuse University’s eleventh Chancellor and President on 7 February 2004. She was the first woman to hold the office. Cantor’s administration saw the creation of the Scholarship in Action initiative and community partnerships such as the Connective Corridor. “Eliminating the physical and cultural barriers that have traditionally separated our university and our city can make a world of difference in how we, as a community, see ourselves,” Cantor stated. Her dedication to diversity and inclusion and to sustainability issues characterized many aspects of her administration. In 2006 she presented the Syracuse 8 with the Chancellor’s Medal for Courage in recognition of their 1970 boycott of racist practices within the football program. During Cantor’s tenure the University also made strides towards becoming a more sustainable campus by signing the American College & University Climate Commitment. Under her leadership, the University reached a billion-dollar fundraising goal with the Campaign for Syracuse University. Cantor resigned in 2013 to become Chancellor of Rutgers University-Newark. Additional information about Chancellor Cantor’s tenure is available in the Archives’ Chancellor Nancy Cantor Records.

Portrait of Chancellor and President Nancy Cantor, 15 March 2004. Syracuse University Photo & Imaging Collection, University Archives.

A Day at the Warehouse – A Festival of the Arts program, April 2006. Buildings & Grounds Collection, University Archives.

The University purchased and renovated the former Dunk & Bright furniture warehouse in downtown Syracuse as part of Chancellor Cantor’s initiatives to connect the University with the City. The space is a multi-use facility offering resources for academic programs and community arts, including galleries, classrooms, design studios, and offices. It was renamed the Nancy Cantor Warehouse in 2013 in honor of her service as Chancellor.