March 7, 2016

Dear USC community,

With profound sadness, I am writing to share the news that Elizabeth Garrett, the thirteenth president of Cornell University and former USC provost and senior vice president for academic affairs, has died, following a courageous battle with colon cancer. Before assuming her role at Cornell last July, Beth served on my senior leadership team for over a decade, and proved herself to be a remarkably dynamic leader with a singular gift for inspired, innovative thinking. So many of us recall her remarkable energy, her tenacious commitment to her work, and her deep passion for our community. She was only 52, and her early passing is a tremendous loss for higher education.

Beth’s legacy at the University of Southern California is both exceptional and assured. Beth worked tirelessly on our behalf, and her accomplishments will continue to benefit the Trojan Family for generations, as we watch our faculty produce even more transformative work, and as our students achieve even greater successes around the world. Many of these contributions will have their roots in Beth’s stellar leadership, and for this we should all be grateful. Our thoughts and prayers are with her husband, Andrei Marmor, and her entire family.


C. L. Max Nikias