Professor of History Clifton Hood has been named the chair – and first recipient – of the recently established George E. Paulsen ’49 Professorship. Created through a bequest, the Paulsen Professorship honors the research, scholarship and teaching of a distinguished member of HWS faculty. Nominated by his or her peers, the award is given to a professor who exemplifies excellence in teaching, a strong commitment to students and intellectual pursuits that celebrate and serve the Colleges.
“Being named to the Paulsen professorship is a real privilege,” says Hood. “It means a lot to be recognized by my peers and my institution. When President Gearan announced that I was receiving this award, the response I received from the faculty and staff was incredibly moving.”
As Paulsen Chair, Hood will serve a five year term, during which he will receive an annual stipend of $2,500 to fund his research. Hood plans to use this money to finance research for his third book, a study of imposters – such as Clark Rockefeller – and society’s reactions to those who conned their way into the upper echelons of society. The stipend will also enable Hood to travel in order to conduct research, as well as allow him to hire research assistants.
Hood has been a member of the HWS faculty since 1992. He holds a bachelor’s degree from Washington University, as well as a master’s degree and doctorate from Columbia University. His main fields of study include elites, New York City, historical memory, and mass transit. Hood is the author of “722 Miles: The Building of the Subways and How They Transformed New York” and is currently completing his second book, “In Pursuit of Privilege: New York City’s Upper Class and the Making of the City, since 1754.” Courses taught regularly by Hood focus on American urban history, elites in America, U.S. environmental history and U.S. ethnicity and immigration.
Paulsen donated regularly to the Annual Fund, and provided contributions to all three of the Colleges’ campaigns. Prior to attending Hobart, Paulsen served in the U.S. Navy Air Corps and fought in WWII. He earned his bachelor’s in history from Hobart in 1949, his master’s degree from Rutgers University and a doctorate in history from Ohio State University. Paulsen served as a professor of history at Arizona State University from 1959 until 1991, when he retired.