Presidential Search - Presidential Search - Christopher Newport University
William G. Kelly

Presidential Search

History in the Making

On February 2, 2023, Rector Lindsey Carney Smith '01 announced the selection of Rear Admiral William G. Kelly as the sixth president of Christopher Newport University.

Please read our article to learn more about our new president.

Our Presidents

On July 1, William G. Kelly will assume his place in Christopher Newport’s history alongside five other Presidents.

H. Westcott Cuningham


H. Westcott Cunningham was Christopher Newport College’s first director, and later its President. His leadership tenure began when the University was in its original location at a former public school building in downtown Newport News. Later, the city purchased a 75-acre tract of land as a permanent site for Christopher Newport.

Dr. James C. Windsor


Dr. James C. Windsor was a psychology professor and dean of students. Among his many accomplishments, Windsor established the student counseling center, which was renamed in his honor in 2012.

Dr. John E. Anderson


Dr. John E. Anderson began his accomplished tenure as third President of Christopher Newport. He later returned to teaching, retiring in 2003 as a distinguished professor of psychology.

Dr. Anthony R. Santoro


Dr. Anthony R. Santoro became the fourth President of Christopher Newport. Under his leadership, the college became a University in 1992. Also under Santoro’s tenure, the University transitioned to a residential campus. The first residence hall was completed in 1994 and named in honor of Santoro and his beloved wife, Carol Santoro. The track and field team won the national championship. President Emeritus Santoro continues his career at Christopher Newport as a distinguished professor of history.

Paul S. Trible


Paul S. Trible Jr. became the fifth President. The former U.S. Senator made sweeping improvements to Christopher Newport’s academic offerings, and led the stunning physical transformation of the campus into a world-class liberal arts and sciences University. Central to his vision was the creation of the President’s Leadership Program (PLP) to empower students to recognize their leadership potential and develop personal and social responsibility. First Lady Rosemary Trible founded Fear 2 Freedom, an organization devoted to helping sexual assault victims in their hour of crisis and assist in their recovery. In 2007, the Paul and Rosemary Trible Library opened its doors, becoming the intellectual center of Christopher Newport University. The women’s soccer team and the softball team both became national champions in academic year 2021–2022. Trible retired as President in 2022, and currently serves as Chancellor for the 2022–2023 academic year.

William G. Kelly


William G. Kelly is appointed as Christopher Newport’s sixth President.

quick edit report a problem