Past NEH Chairmen

The National Endowment for the Humanities is headed by a chairman who is appointed for a four-year term by the President with the advice and consent of the Senate. Since the creation of the NEH in 1965, nine chairmen have directed the agency.

July 2014 to May 2017 William D. Adams
nominated by Barack Obama
Aug. 2009 to May 2013 James A. Leach
nominated by Barack Obama
Dec. 2001 to Jan. 2009 Bruce Cole
nominated by George W. Bush
Nov. 1997 to Nov. 2001 William R. Ferris
nominated by Bill Clinton
Aug. 1993 to Aug. 1997 Sheldon Hackney
nominated by Bill Clinton
May 1986 to Jan. 1993 Lynne V. Cheney
nominated by Ronald Reagan
Dec. 1981 to Feb. 1985 William J. Bennett
nominated by Ronald Reagan
Oct. 1977 to Dec. 1981 Joseph D. Duffey
nominated by Jimmy Carter
Dec. 1971 to Jan. 1977 Ronald S. Berman
nominated by Richard Nixon
July 1966 to June 1970 Barnaby C. Keeney
nominated by Lyndon Johnson
September 1965 Establishment of the NEH
under Lyndon Johnson