Message from the President

June 2014

Welcome to the AARS website.  We hope that you will find material on these pages that will remind you, our Association members, of all that the Rhodes Scholarship has meant in your  lives.  We also hope that the articles and content here will inspire AARS members to re-engage with the larger Rhodes Scholar community in carrying on the World’s Fight.

I am confident that all American Rhodes Scholars are aware of the key challenges and opportunities facing the Rhodes community in the second decade of our second century.  Of course, each of us must decide, based on our life circumstances, how best to give back to the Rhodes Trust in this time of greater need and higher aspiration.

The work of the AARS continues to be defined by our Spring 2011 retreat conducted by Todd Breyfogle (Colorado and Corpus Christi, ‘88) of the Aspen Institute and Olivia White (Utah and Merton, ‘97) of McKinsey and Company.  At that meeting the Board grounded itself in a close reading of the Founder’s Will, and spent a full day discussing excerpts from Frank Aydelotte’s American Rhodes Scholarships: A Review of the First Forty Years, Tony Kenny’s History of the Rhodes Trust, and articles and speeches by then Warden Markwell, among other readings. Our focus was on strategic implications for AARS.

We concluded that the AARS should make assisting the Rhodes Trust a major and immediate priority.  Without a strong Trust, the current Scholarships will be diminished, and new Scholarships will be limited.  Without a leading Scholarship, we will not attract the best young people for the world’s fight.  We in the AARS cannot resolve the Trust’s challenges by ourselves, but we can be an effective partner.

To help convert conviction into reality we have taken several steps:

  • The AARS Board expects all of its member to lead by example with financial support to the Trust’s campaign;
  • The AARS Events and Reunions Committee helps plan and is authorized to help underwrite regional and local events as outreach to the broader AARS community;
  • We engage closely with the Rhodes Trust and Rhodes House to help sustain and build upon the momentum from the 2013 110th Anniversary Celebration in Oxford; and
  • We continue to enhance this website, under the leadership of Janice R. Ugaki (Idaho & St. Antony's '93) and Martina E. Vandenberg (California & St. Antony's '90).

The Rhodes Scholarships have created a community of inspiring leaders around the world.  We hope that you will use this website to build those relationships.

Thank you for visiting the website.  If you have any questions about the AARS or our strategic priorities, please email me at  I hope to see you at an AARS event in the coming months.

All best regards,
Steve Crown