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The Corporation of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology today elected Alexander V. d'Arbeloff to succeed Paul E. Gray as Chairman of that body, effective July 1, 1997. The MIT Corporation is the Institute's board of trustees.
Dr. Gray announced last June his intention to complete his tenure as chairman of the Corporation, after serving 26 years as chancellor, then president and subsequently as chairman. A professor of electrical engineering, he will continue to teach at MIT, his professional home since he entered as a freshman in 1950.
Mr. d'Arbeloff is Chairman and CEO of Teradyne, Inc., a leading manufacturer of automatic test equipment and interconnection systems for the electronics and telecommunications industries.
Commenting on the trustees' decision, MIT President Charles M. Vest said, "Alex d'Arbeloff is truly an outstanding selection for this position. He is a man of strong intellect and accomplishment, whose wisdom I have often sought regarding Institute affairs. He has deep loyalty to MIT, and his teaching both at the Sloan School and in Mechanical Engineering has given him an appreciation of many of the issues of concern to our faculty and students. His knowledge of the high tech industry - a world that intersects strongly with the interests of many of our faculty and the future of our students - is, of course, extraordinary."
Commenting on his election, Mr. d'Arbeloff said: "I am honored and excited by MIT's decision to name me as its new Chairman. I hope to be worthy of that honor and I will work hard to make a significant contribution to the future of MIT."
Professor Lawrence S. Bacow, Chairman of the MIT Faculty, said: "Mr. d'Arbeloff has just the right combination of intellect, professional accomplishment, deep knowledge of MIT, humility, and respect for scholarly tradition that will enable him to develop an excellent relationship with our faculty."
The Chairman of the MIT Corporation has traditionally been a former president who serves full time in that position, in contrast to the practice of most colleges and universities where the chair is a trustee who serves part time in that capacity. Mr. d'Arbeloff has agreed to spend at least fifty percent of his time as Chairman.
Dr. Gray, commenting on the Corporation's choice, said: "I am delighted that Alex has agreed to undertake these responsibilities. His extraordinary experience as founder and chief executive of Teradyne, together with the knowledge of MIT that he has gained from the vantage point of both trustee and teacher, qualify him exceptionally well for the Chairmanship. I look forward to working with him over the next seven months to ensure a seamless transition."
Mr. d'Arbeloff received the S.B. degree in management from MIT in 1949. He has been a member of the MIT Corporation since 1989, and was elected to Life Membership in 1994. He has also served on the Corporation's Development Committee and on the Visiting Committees for the Departments of Economics, Electrical Engineering and Computer Science, and Mechanical Engineering.
In addition, he has taught classes at the Sloan School of Management and has developed and teaches a course on management and entrepreneurship for graduate students in the Department of Mechanical Engineering.
His wife Brit, an aspiring novelist whose earlier professional activities included engineering and business management, received the master's degree in mechanical engineering from the Institute in 1961. Both are active supporters of music and the arts in the Boston area.
Together with his MIT classmate Nicholas DeWolf, Mr. d'Arbeloff was one of two founders of Teradyne in 1960, and became its Chief Executive in 1971. He served as Chairman and President until January 1996, when Teradyne elected a new President. Under his leadership, Teradyne's annual sales have increased from $13 million to $1.2 billion in 1995. Teradyne, headquartered in Boston, is now the world's largest producer of automatic test equipment.
Mr. d'Arbeloff is a Director of Sematech, BTU Corporation, PRI Automation, Stratus Computer Corporation, and several private companies. A Director and former Chairman of the Massachusetts High Technology Council, he is also a Director of the Center for Quality of Management. He is a Trustee of Partners Health Care System, Massachusetts General Hospital, and the New England Conservatory.
Mr. d'Arbeloff's election as Chairman was proposed to the Corporation by its Executive Committee, upon the recommendation of a search committee chaired by trustee Dr. W. Gerald Austen (MIT Class of 1951), Surgeon-in-Chief at the Massachusetts General Hospital. Other members of the search committee, all MIT trustees, were Dr. Morris Tanenbaum (co-chair), Dr. Edward E. David, Jr. (Class of 1947), and Ms. Judy C. Lewent (Class of 1972).