The Five-Minute Interview: Stanley E. Taylor, Vice President for Metropolitan Relations

Posted: October 17, 2006 at 1:00 am, Last Updated: November 30, -0001 at 12:00 am

By David Driver

Stanley Taylor
Stanley Taylor

Stanley E. Taylor’s first involvement with George Mason University was in 1979, when he was appointed to the Board of Visitors by then-Virginia Gov. John N. Dalton. Taylor joined George Mason in 1989 following years of professional work in the fields of architecture and economic development.

Taylor, who has lived in Alexandria, Va., since 1975, has held a variety of roles since then. Most recently, he had been vice president of the Arlington Campus. Last March, President Alan Merten announced Taylor’s new title would be vice president of metropolitan relations, with enhanced responsibility for developing community contacts and institutional opportunities in Arlington, Alexandria and Washington, D.C.; he reports to Provost Peter Stearns.

Taylor was recently appointed chair for the White House Commission on Presidential Scholars by President George W. Bush. Taylor was originally appointed to the commission in 2001.

Taylor received his master’s degree in 1976 from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln and his bachelor’s degree in 1970 from Hampton University.

For the five-minute interview, we asked Taylor to complete the sentences below.

If I wasn’t talking to you right now, I’d be … going back to the office and finishing up responses to e-mails and telephone calls, or working with my assistant to set up appointments. Most of the time I am out in the community, meeting with people and attending for-profit and nonprofit organization meetings and events.

My favorite thing about working at Mason is … working with deans and senior administrators.

The last book I enjoyed was … “Dominion,” by Calvin Smith, about an African-American family that started out here in Virginia and moved to North Carolina before the Civil War. I just finished that.

My favorite kind of ice cream is … I don’t eat ice cream.

My favorite restaurant is … Clyde’s.

My favorite television shows are … there are tons of them. We can talk about “Gunsmoke,” “Bonanza,” The Jeffersons,” “The Cosby Show. ” The new ones now, they have too much crime. I don’t care for them. In general, I love the old Westerns.

Some of my hobbies are … gardening, biking, tennis, photography, sailing and dancing.

Exciting things going on at Mason now are … the basketball team, the Performing Arts Center. There are some really nice things happening from the research perspective.

The highlight of my career at Mason is … my new role. Actually, (being involved in the community) was something I had been doing. The president and vice president liked my involvement in the community.

I’m very bad at … nothing.

My favorite tourist spot to take out-of-town guests is … the Smithsonian Institution. You can see so many different things there.

My philosophy of working with others at Mason is … I do things as a team player, not as a dictator or controller. That has always been my life’s goal. I want everyone to be happy, and be a team player.

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