Richard Atkinson awarded UC Presidential Medal
UC President Mark G. Yudof has awarded the UC Presidential Medal to President Emeritus Richard C. Atkinson, the 17th president of the University of California and former chancellor of UC San Diego.
“From his years at the National Science Foundation to his leadership at the University of California, Richard has redefined the relationship between academia and industry, reshaped the field of university administration and helped revolutionize scholarly disciplines ranging from experimental psychology to applied mathematics,” said President Yudof upon bestowing the medal on Aug. 27. “He successfully realized this university’s three-part mission of high-quality academics, full-throated access and unprecedented public service to its greatest extent. San Diego, California and the United States have all been the better for it.”
Atkinson established the Presidential Medal in 1997 as a way to recognize extraordinary contributions to the University of California or the community of learning. The medal is the highest honor UC’s president can bestow.
“There is no institution closer to my heart than the University of California,” said Atkinson. “To be awarded the presidential medal is an unexpected honor, and one for which I will always be grateful.”
Atkinson, the 29th person to be awarded the medal, served as chancellor of UC San Diego from 1980 to 1995 and as UC president from 1995 to 2003.