Past presidents Ernest Hartwell and Donal Tower in the early '50s Past presidents Ernest Hartwell and Donal Tower in the early '50s

Past Presidents & Principals of the College

This comprehensive list of the College past presidents/principals dates back to our time as the Brockport Collegiate Institute—a normal school that focused on teacher education—to SUNY Brockport as we know it today.

Brockport Collegiate Institute

  • Julius Bates (1841 - 1845)
  • Oliver Morehouse (1845 - 1846)
  • Jacob C. Tooker (1846 - 1848)
  • John G.K. Truair (1848 - 1853)
  • N.P. Stanton (1853 - 1856)
  • David Burbank (1856 - 1861)
  • Reverend P.J. Williams (1861 - 1863)
  • Malcolm MacVicar (1863 - 1867)

Brockport State Normal School

  • Charles McLean (1867 - 1898)
  • David Eugene Smith (1898 - 1901)
  • Charles T. McFarlene (1901 - 1910)
  • Alfred Thompson (1910 - 1936)
  • Ernest Hartwell (1936 - 1944)

SUNY Brockport

  • Donald Tower (1944 - 1964)
  • Albert Brown (1965 - 1981)
  • John E. Van de Wetering (1981 - 1997)
  • Paul Yu (1997 - 2004)
  • John B. Clark (2004 - 2005)
  • John R. Halstead (2005 - 2015)
  • Heidi Macpherson (2015 - Current)

For more on the history of the college and it’s leadership up to through the early years of Brown’s presidency, see Cherishing This Heritage, a 1969 history.