Archives and Special Collections
92 Snell Library
360 Huntington Ave.
Boston, MA 02115
(617) 373-2351

Archives and Special Collections Finding Aids

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Collection Overview
Title:Corporation and Board of Trustees records
Date:1902-2010
Location Code:23/1-2, 28/2, 30/4, 33/2, 35/3
Reference Code:A12
Extent: 30.35 cubic ft. (49 boxes)
Scope and Content Abstract:The bulk of the collection consists of meeting minutes of the Corporation, Board of Trustees, Executive Committee of the Board of Trustees, Executive Council of the University, and governing committees, including the Development, Facilities, Housing, Nominating, and Presidential Search Committees. Meeting minutes include agenda and attachments. Also included in the collection is a large number of member files consisting of biographical information, photographs and correspondence.
Historical Abstract:Northeastern University was incorporated in 1916 as the Northeastern College of the Young Men's Christian Association. In its first two decades, at least two-thirds of Northeastern University's Corporation members were directors of the Greater Boston Y.M.C.A. The Board of Trustees of the Endowment Funds was established in 1924. In 1927, it became the Board of Trustees of the Permanent Funds, but disbanded in 1932. On January 22, 1937 the Corporation founded the Northeastern University Board of Trustees. The Board of Trustees is elected annually by and from the Northeastern Corporation. The Board is allocated all of the powers of the Corporation and has the final word on Northeastern University's goals and policies. In June of 1985, the bylaws of the Corporation were amended to allow for the formation of the Board of Overseers. The Board of Overseers was created to relieve the Board of Trustees of some of the burden of governing Northeastern University. The Corporation also provides members for sundry governing committees. The standing governing committees are: Academic Affairs, Audit, Budget, Building, Development, Executive, Facilities, Funds and Investments, Housing, and Student Affairs.
Language and Scripts:Materials entirely in English.
System of Arrangement:The collection is organized into four series: Series 1. Corporation, Series 2. Board of Trustees of the Permanent Funds, Series 3. Board of Trustees, and Series 4. Executive Council of the University.
Subjects and Contributors:
  • Northeastern University (Boston, Mass.). Board of Trustees.
  • Northeastern University (Boston, Mass.). Corporation.
  • Northeastern University (Boston, Mass.). Executive Council.
  • Northeastern University (Boston, Mass.) -- Buildings.
  • Northeastern University (Boston, Mass.) -- Administration.

  • College trustees -- Massachusetts -- Boston.
  • College buildings -- Massachusetts -- Boston.

Conditions Governing Access:Records are closed for 50 years from the date of their creation, unless researchers have written permission from the creating office.
Processor: Finding aid prepared by Ken Risley, Katie Geiszler, Ellen Lassiter, Rebecca Parmer, and Martha Pearson on June 1998, June 2003, February 2005, April 2008, and April 2014

Scope and Content Note

The bulk of the material in the collection consists of meeting minutes of the Corporation, Board of Trustees, Executive Committee of the Board of Trustees, Executive Council of the University, and committees, including the Development, Facilities, Housing, and Nominating committees.  The minutes include agenda and attachments.  On several occasions, joint meetings of two entities were held.  These minutes are listed separately, with the folder title containing both committee names. Researchers may also wish to consult the Corporation Directories located in the Northeastern University Collection.

Records of special committees assembled for the selection of Presidents Ryder and Curry are found in the Board of Trustees series (Boxes 21-22), and the files for President Freeland are also located in this series (Box 49).  Files on each candidate document the Ryder selection process (Box 21, Folders 991-1022).  These files are arranged alphabetically and include correspondence, curriculum vitae, notes, photographs, and letters of reference. There are also detailed files of the final five candidates (Box 21, Folders 1017-1021), including President Ryder.  The procedure for the selection of President Curry is summarized in the Final Report of the Special Committee for the Selection of a President, 1990 (Box 22, Folder 1027).  This file details the administrative actions of the selection committee, but the candidates remain anonymous. Files for individual members of the committee are also arranged alphabetically and include biographical and correspondence records (Boxes 31-36). Photos of many of the board members are available in the photography file. Researchers should also note that the Jury Award of the Board of Trustees, 1934, refers to the competition for a master plan of the NU physical plant (Box 10, Folder 540).

Historical Note

Northeastern University became a legal entity in 1916 when the Secretary of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts signed into law a bill authorizing the incorporation of Northeastern College of the Young Men's Christian Association.  The first two decades of Northeastern's Corporation were linked to the Greater Boston Y.M.C.A. (see collection M13) because, by law, two-thirds of the Corporation members had to be directors of the Greater Boston Y.M.C.A.  The Board of Trustees of the Endowment Funds was established in 1924.  Its name was changed in 1927 to the Board of Trustees of the Permanent Funds, and it disbanded in 1932.      

In January 22, 1937 the Corporation founded the Northeastern University Board of Trustees.  The Board of Trustees is elected annually by and from the Northeastern Corporation.  The Board is allocated all of the powers of the Corporation and has the final word on the University's goals and policies.  In its first four years, the Board doubled in size, from 20 to 40 members.  By the 1940s, there were no overlapping directors of the Boston Y.M.C.A. on the board.  The Corporation also provides the members of the sundry governing committees.  The standing committees are: Academic Affairs, Audit, Budget, Building, Development, Executive, Facilities, Funds and Investments, Housing, and Student Affairs.  The following decades, 1937-1957, saw the Corporation extend its membership to 122 persons.  In 1968 the Board of Trustees introduced the Committee on Academic Affairs and the Committee on Student Affairs.  1968 was also the year that saw the first woman admitted to the Corporation, Mrs. Frances Commins Kennerson.  A year later, the Corporation welcomed its first three black members, Edward E. Brooke, Victor C. Bynoe, and Kenneth A. Loftman.  

In June of 1985, the bylaws of the Corporation were amended to allow for the formation of the Board of Overseers.  The additional board was formed to relieve the Board of Trustees of some of the burden of governing the University.  Prompted by President Kenneth G. Ryder's call for more involvement by the University Corporation and Board of Trustees, the Board of Overseers was created to provide a talent pool for new committees, offer training for future members of the Board, and be a potential source for gifts.
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Series:

1. Corporation, 1904-2005
Volume:2.80 cubic ft.
Arrangement:

Alphabetical
BoxTitleDate
38, 41Acts and Resolves of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts (18 folders)1904-1968
1Agreement of Association 1916
36Annual Meeting Program2003
1By-laws (7 folders)n.d., 1916-2000
37Certificate of Title1936
37Charter1916
1Directory 1985-1990
2Meetings (audio tapes) (4 folders)1959, 1973-1975
3Members Card Filen.d.
Minutes
5-7, 45Records (74 folders)1936-2005
4Microfilm1971-1974
37, 41Name Change Documents (2 folders)1920, 1935
39, 41Northeastern University Seal Registration (2 folders)1972-1979
41Organization Chart1930
38Revenue Bond Information (3 folders)1998-2005
39Tax Exemption Issues1977-1978
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Series:

2. Board of Trustees of the Permanent Funds, 1924-1932
Volume:0.1 cubic ft.
Arrangement:

Alphabetical
BoxTitleDate
7Minutes 1924-1932
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Series:

3. Board of Trustees, 1902-2010
Volume:25.95 cubic ft.
Arrangement:

Alphabetical
BoxTitleDate
7Ad Interim Affairs, Committee on1932
Academic Affairs Committee
7-11, 45Records (139 folders)1969-2005
4Microfilm1969-1974
11Acquiring of Additional Land, Special Committee on (3 folders)1933
11Annuities, Special Committee on 1940
11Areas, Committee on 1940
11, 45Athletics, Ad Hoc Committee on (2 folders)1998
11-12, 45Audit Committee (56 folders)1978-2005
Azland, Inc.
36, 45Annual Meeting1969-1976, 1986-1992, 2002
36Assumption and Idemnity Agreement1969
36Bylaws1970
36Corporate Records1968
36Correspondence1969-1992
36Deed of Trust1968
36Note Purchase Agreement1968
Properties
36Leases (7 folders)1968-1977
36Mortgages (3 folders)1968-1969
37Notes and Assignments1968-1969
37Property Taxes1972, 1974, 1977, n.d.
37Sale to Home and Savings Loan Association – Ohio1977-1978
37Proposal of Land Sale1969
37Rent Checks and Gift Notations1970-1972
37Tax Reports1984-1990
12-13,43Budget Committee: Records (24 folders)1932, 1984-1993
13Building Committee1933
13Buildings Committee (7 folders)1945-1954
37Buildings and Real Estate Index1961-1981
13Bylaws Review Committee 1943
37Centennial Campaign: Post-Campaign Internal Review1998
13Chairman, Correspondence and Memoranda 1975
37Chairman's Event, Programs2003, 2005
37Commencement Committee: Minutes (3 folders)1984-1993
13, 25Commencement Speakers and Honorary Degrees (3 folders)1983-1984, 1995-1998
13Committees, General 1990
25, 45Cooperative Education, Special Committee on (8 folders)1998-1999
14Correspondence (2 folders)1974-1975
37Debt Assessment, Subcommittee on: Minutes1987
Development Committee
14, 45Records (82 folders)1935-2005
4Microfilm1959-1967
14, 45Development Committee and Campaign Cabinet (11 folders)1993-2005
37Diamond Anniversary Development Program1975
37, 49 Enrollment, Special Committee on (4 folders) 1990-1991
Executive Committee
14Beggs Proposition, Special Committee on 1959
14Boston Storage Warehouse, Special Committee on 1959
37Business and Industry Institute, Proposal1967
14Faculty Retirement Plan, Special Committee on 1946
14Finance, Subcommittee on 1961
14Financing the 10-Year Development Program, Subcommittee on 1961
14Huntington School for Boys, Special Committee on the Disposition of 1950
14-17, 45-46Minutes (475 folders)1933-2005
17New England College of Pharmacy, Special Committee on 1961
17Pierce Mansion, Special Committee on 1961
17Student Center Building, Subcommittee on 1945
17United Reality Property, Special Committee on (3 folders)1960
Facilities, Committee on
17, 46Facilities, Subcommittee on (4 folders)1998-2004
17-18Minutes (49 folders)1954-1992
18Facilities and Development, Committee on (9 folders)1972-1978
18Faculty Dismissal Committee1988
18Fiftieth Anniversary, Central Committee on (2 folders)1947
18Finance Committee (37 folders)1980-1992
18Finance and Facilities, Committee on 1993
18, 46Financial Affairs, Committee on (32 folders)1993-2005
19, 42-43Auditor's Reports, Financial Statements and Statistical Reports (35 folders)1925-1986
37, 48Surveys and Plans for Fund Raising for Northeastern University and Fund–Raising Potential of Northeastern University, Special Study and Report 1931, 1934, 2000
19Funds and Investments, Committee on (17 folders) 1938-1945, 1974-1979
19, 46Funds and Investments, Subcommittee on (8 folders)1998-2005
19, 46Governance (20 folders)1984-2004
46Graduate Education, Special Committee (5 folders)2003-2004
19Honorary Degrees, Special Committee on (3 folders)1961-1962,1973
19Housing and Endowment, Joint Committee Meeting (2 folders)1928
20Housing, Committee on (5 folders)1993
20Inauguration, Committee on 1940
20Institute for Experiential Education, Special Committee on 1973
37Institute for Off-Campus Experience and Cooperative Education1973-1974
20Invitations to Dinners Honoring Chairman and President 1989
20Jury Award of the Board of Trustees 1934
20, 46Long-Range Planning Committee (39 folders)1984-2004
31-36, 43-44Members (526 folders)1902-2010
Minutes
21-24, 44-46Records (425 folders)1917-2005
4, 28-30Microfilm1915-1999
37Index (3 folders)1926-1944, 1960-1980
38Index of Votes (5 folders)1961-1988
24New Requirements of Board of Bar Examiners, Special Committee on 1934
24, 27, 47Nominating Committee: Records (83 Folders)1933-1965, 1978-2005
24, 37, 47Overseers, Board of (28 folders)1985-2002
24Orientation for New Members 1999
24, 49 Presidential Nominating Council (8 folders) 1988-1989, 1995-1996
Presidential Selection Advisory Committee
24Candidates; A-W, (5 folders)1974-1975
25Chronology 1974-1975
25Correspondence and Activities (20 folders)1973-1975
25Final Candidates (5 folders)1973-1975
25Progress Reports 1974-1975
25Purchase of Durant Land, Special Committee on 1932
25Re-organization, Special Committee on 1931
25Revise Dismissal Procedure, Committee to 1990
25Separation of Northeastern University from Boston YMCA 1995
39South Africa
25Speare's Retirement, Special Committee on 1940
25Special Committee (2 folders)1992-1999
Special Committee for the Selection of a President
25Final Report 1990
25Meeting Minutes (2 folders)1988-1989
25Memoranda 1988-1989
25Progress Reports 1988-1989
25Special Meeting of Board of Trustees (2 folders)1973-1975
37Standing Committees Minutes Index1932-1973
39Strategic Plan Implementation Report1989
39Strategic Planning Steering Committee: Strategic Plan Report “The Connected Community”1993
39Strategic Research and Graduate Program Development: Executive Summary1999
Students Affairs, Committee on
25Records (19 folders)1969-1993
4Microfilm 1969-1972
25, 47Student Affairs and Commencement, Committee on (32 folders)1994-2005
39Study of the Campus Environment for Diversity, Report1996
39Task Force on Alumni Relations Final Report1997
40Testimonial: George Matthews (2 videotapes)2003
25University Problems, Special Committee on 1935
39Wentworth Liaison Committee1983
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Series:

4. Executive Council for the University, 1922-1978
Volume:1.15 cubic ft.
Arrangement:

Alphabetical
BoxTitleDate
26Announcement 1949
26Approval 1966
26Correspondence 1963
26Joint Meeting of the Executive and Academic Council (29 folders)1961-1978
26Membership List 1922-1962
26Memoranda 1970, 1974
26Minutes (205 folders)1957-1978
27Proposed Agenda 1966
27Vote 1960
27Vote Index 1960-1978
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