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Former dean of admission dead at 80

Fred Hargadon, former dean of admission at Stanford University, passed away at the age of 80 last Wednesday night. Hargadon spent more than 35 years in college admissions, working at Swarthmore College from 1964 to 1969 before coming to Stanford to work from 1969 to 1984. He then moved to Princeton University from 1988 until his retirement in 2003.

Hargadon was a well-liked national leader in the field of college admissions, dubbed the “dean of deans” by The New York Times. He was enthusiastic about admissions, speaking and writing frequently about the subject—according to a 1984 profile, his convertible’s license plate was “ADMITS.”

About Catherine Zaw

Catherine Zaw is the Managing Editor of News at The Stanford Daily. She is a junior from Miami, FL, double majoring in biology and linguistics. To contact her, please email
  • Ivan Maisel ’81

    Your two-paragraph obituary of Fred Hargadon is a deep disappointment for anyone with a long-term connection to the university. Dean Fred was a towering figure on campus, and not just because he stood nearly six-and-a-half-feet tall. Not only did he serve as admissions director as Stanford became a nationally prominent university, but he immersed himself in campus life as few administrators do. for instance, and this is just a small one, he made a cameo appearance in Gaieties every year.

    If nothing else, it should have dawned on someone at the Daily that if Princeton put out a 20-paragraph news release upon his death, and he served at Stanford for an equivalent amount of time, perhaps it would be worth a phone call (or 12) to investigate who this man was on your campus. You would have been pleasantly surprised, and served your readers well, too.

  • PE_Carroll

    That’s it? Four sentences? Your reporter and editor obviously did not bother to find out who Fred Hargadon was. – Pat Carroll, ’82