Edward Ayers

  • University of Richmond

Edward Ayers is president of the University of Richmond, a position he assumed in 2007. Previously he served as dean of arts and sciences at the University of Virginia, where he began teaching in 1980. Ed was named the National Professor of the Year by the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching in 2003. He has written and edited ten books. The Promise of the New South: Life After Reconstruction was a finalist for both the National Book Award and the Pulitzer Prize. In the Presence of Mine Enemies: Civil War in the Heart of America won the Bancroft Prize for distinguished writing in American history and the Beveridge Prize for the best book in English on the history of the Americas since 1492. Ed created The Valley of the Shadow: Two Communities in the American Civil War, a web site that has attracted millions of users and won major prizes in the teaching of history. He was appointed by President Clinton to the National Council on the Humanities, on which he served from 2000 to 2004, was a Fulbright professor in the Netherlands, and is a member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. He presented his work on The Valley of the Shadow at the Forum’s 2003 Aspen Symposium. Ed earned his Ph.D. in American Studies at Yale University.