Elwood Gordon Gee is an educator and university administrator. He has been a university president more than any other American. He is a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.
Gee was born on February 2, 1944, in Vernal, Utah. He earned his bachelor’s in history from the University of Utah in 1968. He earned his juris doctorate from Columbia University Law School in 1971 and his EdD from Teachers College at Columbia University in 1972. He was a federal judicial clerk and then served as an assistant dean for the University of Utah College of Law. He was a judicial fellow and senior staff assistant to the Supreme Court for one year for Justice Warren Burger.
In 1975, Gee became associate dean of the law school at Brigham Young University and was an associate professor of law. In 1979, he became dean and professor at West Virginia University's law school. Two years later he became university president. He was 37 years old at the time. From 1985 to 1990, he was president of the University of Colorado, from 1990 to 1997 he was president of Ohio State University, from 1998 to 2000 he was president of Brown University. After a tumultuous tenure at Brown, he was president of chancellor of Vanderbilt University from 2000 to 2007. In 2007 he returned to Ohio State University as president until 2013 when he announced he would retire after he made a series of comments that he called his “poor attempt at humor.” He returned to West Virginia University, first as interim president on December 5, 2013, and then as president on March 3, 2014. Time magazine rated him among the top ten college presidents in the United States for 2010.
Gee and his first wife, Dr. Elizabeth Dutson Gee, had one daughter. His wife passed away in 1991; they had been married close to twenty-three years. Gee was later married to Constance Bumgarner for thirteen years.