Faculty Chairs

To be the best, you must learn from the best. To achieve this mission, the Johnson gift has endowed two professorships at Washington and Lee: one in the Williams School of Commerce, Economics, and Politics focusing on entrepreneurship and leadership, and another in the College of Arts and Sciences exploring how individuals and ideas shape the course of history.

Nicolaas Rupke, Johnson Professor of History

A native of Rotterdam, the Netherlands, Rupke was trained in earth sciences in Groningen and in marine geology at Princeton University. After establishing an impressive research record in marine geology, Rupke turned his interests to the history of science, particularly to late-modern biological and physical sciences as they developed in Germany and Great Britain.

He has employed a biographical approach to historical figures in science - an approach that blends historiography and the history of ideas to show the ways in which scientific leadership is a product not only of individual genius, but also of collective ideas and institutional forces. He is the author of several books and has held distinguished research fellowships at the Smithsonian Institution, the University of Oxford and the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation, among others.

More about Dr. Rupke's work at W&L: