Presidential Archivist to Head UT’s Baker Center

Alan C. Lowe, administrator of operations for the nation’s presidential libraries, has been named executive director of the University of Tennessee’s Howard H. Baker Jr. Center for Public Policy.

Lowe is director of operations for the Office of Presidential Libraries in the U.S. National Archives and Records Administration. He will assume his new position with the Baker Center in January.

Howard H. Baker Jr.

University of Tennessee President John Shumaker said Lowe’s experience working with presidents and building archival centers will be a boon to the Baker Center.

“It takes a person with special qualities and unique skills to develop and run the official archival centers of America’s most distinguished public servants,” Shumaker said. “Alan Lowe has all those qualities and more.

“We are extremely pleased and honored that he has agreed to direct the Baker Center for Public Policy at UT.”

Tom Griscom, a member of the Baker Center board of directors from Chattanooga, said, “Alan-s extensive background in planning, organizing and implementing the programs and archives for four presidential libraries is invaluable. He understands the research role for such a facility and its mission to connect with various public constituencies.”

Lowe, who currently is administrator for 12 presidential library projects across the nation, worked with the White House to move the George Bush Sr. presidential materials to College Station, Texas.

Lowe also managed the Bill Clinton Presidential Materials Project and currently plays a key role in establishment of the Clinton Presidential Library in Little Rock, Ark.

He served as archivist for the Reagan Presidential Library in Simi Valley, Calif., and was interim director of the Roosevelt Library in Hyde Park, N.Y.

“We are confident that Alan Lowe’s experience, knowledge and leadership will help ensure the Baker Center’s success as an educational facility for students, a historical archive and a public policy research institute,” Provost Loren Crabtree said.

UT selected Lowe, who received bachelors and masters degrees in history from the University of Kentucky, after a nationwide search launched in March.

The Howard H. Baker Jr. Center for Public Policy is named for the former Senate Majority Leader and Reagan chief of staff who currently is U.S. Ambassador to Japan. Baker also is a 1949 UT Law graduate.

The center, formally adopted by the UT board of trustees earlier this year, will explore the role of the media in the political process, the structure of the American electoral system and the importance of public involvement in governing.

It will be located on the UT campus and have a special emphasis on introducing college and high school students to the responsibilities and rewards of public service.

As executive director, Lowe will report to the center’s board of directors and work with the faculty and student advisory committee to provide administrative, professional and academic leadership.

His duties include establishment of public programs, scheduling visiting scholars and conferences, and procuring and developing exhibitions and programs featuring Baker’s papers and other related political figures.