Córdova, France A. (8/5/1947- )

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  • Number of Terms: 1
  • Occupation: College president and astrophysicist
  • Committees: Chair, Executive Committee, 2012-2014; Governance and Nominating, Strategic Planning and Programs
  • Biography: France A. Córdova of Indiana was the 11th President of Purdue University, an internationally recognized astrophysicist, and a national leader in post secondary education, 2007-2011. Prior to joining Purdue in 2007, she served in the University of California system for 11 years, first as the Professor of Physics and Vice Chancellor for Research at UC Santa Barbara and then as the Distinguished Professor of Physics and Astronomy and Chancellor for UC Riverside. Dr. Córdova also was Chief Scientist at NASA from 1993 to 1996. She has published more than 150 scientific papers and continues to pursue scholarly research. Currently, Dr. Córdova and two colleagues have a collaborative experiment flying on the European Space Agency's X-Ray Multi-Mirror Mission. She also serves on numerous state and national boards, most recently accepting an appointment to the Board of Trustees for Mayo Clinic in May 2008 and a six-year presidential appointment to the National Science Board, effective November 2008.


  • Córdova, France A 98/5/1947- )
  • Citizen Regent
  • Board of Regents


Smithsonian Board of Regents

Regent type




Short Legal Citation

Public Law

Contact information

Institutional History Division, Smithsonian Institution Archives, 600 Maryland Avenue, SW, Washington, D.C. 20024-2520, SIHistory@si.edu


Regent Tenure: 2009-2014


  • Women
  • Astrophysicists
  • College presidents





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