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Former Congressman Tom Davis Named George Mason University’s Rector

August 21, 2014


Media contact: Michael Sandler, 703-993-8815,

Fairfax, Va. – August 21, 2014 – George Mason University’s next rector is former U.S. Representative Tom Davis.

Tom Davis

Tom Davis

Davis, who served seven terms in Congress representing Northern Virginia voters, was elected by his colleagues on George Mason’s Board of Visitors to lead the 16-member board.

The board also chose Stu Mendelsohn as vice rector and Kelly McNamara Corley as secretary.

Davis has served on Mason’s Board of Visitors since 2013. He was elected to the board after three decades of service representing Fairfax County voters at the national and local level.

Davis was first elected to the U.S. House of Representatives in 1994 and represented Virginia’s 11th District until 2008. During his tenure in Congress, Davis was chair of the House Committee on Government Reform from 2003 until 2007. He also led the National Republican Congressional Committee from 1998 to 2002.

Prior to his time in Congress, Davis served on the Fairfax County Board of Supervisors from 1979 until 1994 and was chair of the board from 1991 through 1994. During his three years as chair, Fairfax was named the best-managed county in the country by Governing Magazine.

“Congressman Davis is a proven leader who understands our mission and supports the ambitious vision we have set,” says Mason president Ángel Cabrera. “I’m delighted with the board’s decision and look forward to a productive working relationship with him and the other board members.”

Davis is now a director for Deloitte. He graduated cum laude from Amherst College and earned a JD degree from the University of Virginia’s Law School.

Mendelsohn was appointed in June 2012 to Mason’s Board of Visitors. He’s the executive partner of the Tysons Corner office of the law firm of Holland & Knight LLP. Mendelsohn served eight years on the Fairfax County Board of Supervisors and two years as vice chair of the Fairfax County School Board. He received a bachelor of science and a master of science from the Florida Institute of Technology and a JD from Mason’s School of Law with honors.

Corley was appointed in July 2013 to Mason’s Board of Visitors. She is executive vice president, general counsel and secretary of Discover Financial Services. She is also a member of Discover Financial Services’ Executive Committee. Corley earned her bachelor’s degree from the University of Southern California and her JD from Mason’s School of Law.

The Board of Visitors was created in April 1972 by an act of the General Assembly when the university became an independent institution. Its members are appointed by the governor of Virginia on a rotating basis to serve four-year terms.

About George Mason University

George Mason is Virginia’s largest public research university. Located near Washington, D.C., Mason enrolls nearly 34,000 students from 130 countries and all 50 states. Mason has grown rapidly over the last half-century and is recognized for its innovation and entrepreneurship, remarkable diversity and commitment to accessibility.