In the early years, the role of Chief Academic Officer was the responsibility of the Principal. This responsibility was possibly given to the Vice-Principal, a position created about 1918. William Gregory Siddell was the first person to occupy that position. Following him as Vice-Principal in 1919 was Clarence C. Crawford. Crawford remained in this office until 1921 when he was given the title Dean of Instruction and the Vice-Principal title was dropped. Crawford held this position until he was promoted to Principal in 1923.
F.S. Heinaman then replaced him as the Dean of Instruction. In 1929, Heinaman gave up his administrative duties but remained at Edinboro teaching mathematics.
His replacement as Dean of Instruction was Elmer C. Stilling. Stilling remained in that office until 1936 when William A. Wheatley, who had been teaching in the Education Department, was named Acting Dean of Instruction and Men's Counselor. In 1937, Wheatley's title was altered to Registrar and Dean of Instruction. There is a brief vacancy in this position as the 1939 catalog lists the position as open. In 1940 Herman L. Offner, formerly the Director of Teacher Training, is listed as the Dean of Instruction and Director of Summer Session.
Offner held this position for nearly twenty years. After his retirement from Edinboro, he became a Representative of the United States Office of Education. Offner was succeeded by Harry Earlley in 1959. Earlley held this position until 1966 when he had to step in as Acting President because of the untimely death of President Thomas Miller. Tragically, Earlley also suffered a heart attack at the Erie airport just two months after assuming that office.
James McKinley followed Earlley as Dean of Academic Affairs. In 1970 the position received a title change to Vice-President for Academic Affairs. In 1974, John Fisher temporarily took over the responsibilities of the position as Interim Vice-President for Academic Affairs. McKinley resumed the title and position by 1975. By 1982, McKinley was using the title Provost/Vice President for Academic Affairs.
Burton Witthuhn assumed the office by 1985. His tenure was comparatively short as John Fleischauer appears in 1988 as Interim Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs. His time in office lasted until 1996 when Robert Weber entered the office at first as an Interim, then as a permanent Provost and Vice-President for Academic Affairs.
Following Weber in 2005, was the first female provost, Pearl Bartelt. She held the office until 2010 when Philip Ginnetti was hired. He died in 2012 while in office. An interim, Michael Hannan, has stepped in to replace him. In February of 2014, he was hired as the permanent provost.
Chief Academic Officers (dates taken from college catalogues and may vary + or - 1 year)
William Gregory Siddell- 1918
Clarence C. Crawford - 1919-23
F.S. Heinan - 1923-29
Elmer C. Stilling - 1929-36
William A. Wheatley - 1936-39
Herman L. Offner - 1940-59
Harry Earlley - 1959-66
James McKenley - 1966-85
Burton Witthuhn - 1985-88
John Fleischauer - 1988-96
Robert Weber - 1996-2005
Pearl Bartelt - 2005-2010
Philip Ginnetti - 2010- 2012
Michael Hannan (interium) 2012- 2013 became permanent 2014Note written by Dave Obringer