Chicago Lawyer Named President Of St. John's

April 22, 1991

A Chicago attorney has been appointed president of St. John's College in Annapolis, the small, liberal arts school best-known for its 204-year history and "Great Books" curriculum.

Christopher Nelson, a 42-year-old lawyer who graduated from the Santa Fe, N.M., campus of St. John's in 1970, will take over in June. His appointment ended a yearlong search for a president for the 400-student Annapolis campus ofSt. John's.

The college's Board of Visitors and Governors selected Nelson during an executive meeting Saturday. A member of the governing board since 1986, Nelson has given free legal counsel to St. John's and is a strong advocate of liberal arts education.

Three generations of his family have studied history and literature under the college's 54-year-old curriculum based on great books.

Nelson studied at the Annapolis campus for three years before going to Santa Fe in his senior year. Three years after he graduated from St. John's, Nelson receivedhis law degree. He joined a Chicago-based firm specializing in laborlaw and, in 1979, started a firm with four other lawyers.

The father of four sons, Nelson said he only applied to one college -- St. John's. He returned to Chicago yesterday to wrap up business before replacing Donald J. MacIver Jr., the interim president.

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