Yesenia Barajas '12
Larry N. Vanderhoef earned his bachelor’s degree in biology at the University of Wisconsin, Milwaukee and went on to obtain his Ph.D. from Purdue University in plant biochemistry in 1969. Vanderhoef explains that he became especially interested in biology when he was looking closely at thorns on a branch, and they moved. The sensation that the thorns, which were seemingly immobile, were somehow alive and moving was just one in a string of eye-popping natural phenomena Vanderhoef noticed. He jokes that this startled him into a career in plant and biology research.
Although his interests began with biology, Vanderhoef stumbled onto administration. In 1984, Vanderhoef was hired as the provost and executive vice chancellor of UC Davis. Ten years later, Vanderhoef was named the fifth chancellor of UC Davis by the Regents of the University of California. He retired in 2009 and has since been chancellor emeritus of UC Davis.
After retiring as chancellor, he returned to the classroom to lead introductory biology courses. Furthermore, Vanderhoef stays connected to UC Davis by attending various events, donating and volunteering. As Vanderhoef puts it, he’s always in the office and out and about campus all day every day.
Posted March 2012