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Richard C. Atkinson served from 1995-2003 as the seventeenth president of the University of California system. His eight-year tenure was marked by innovative approaches to admissions and outreach, research initiatives to accelerate the university’s contributions to the state’s economy, and a challenge to the country’s most widely used admissions examination the SAT 1 that initiated major changes in the way millions of America’s youth will be tested for college admissions. Before becoming president of the UC System, he served for fifteen years as chancellor of UC San Diego, leading its emergence as one of the top research universities in the nation. His own research in cognitive science and psychology addresses problems of memory and cognition. He is a member of the National Academy of Sciences, the Institute of Medicine, the National Academy of Education, and the American Philosophical Society. He is a former director of the National Science Foundation, a past president of the American Association of Universities, and was a long-term member of the faculty at Stanford University. A mountain in Antarctica is named is his honor.