With determination and humility, Langdon Cook P'99, P'05 has added significantly to the momentum of Hobart and William Smith Colleges, serving as a model for how parents can remain engaged with their children's alma mater. Through his leadership on the Board of Trustees and his important work to advance Campaign for the Colleges, he has provided a constant source of support and guidance for nearly two decades.
Raised in Nebraska, Langdon Cook attended Phillips Exeter Academy and Princeton University before launching a successful career in the municipal and government bond business, founding his own firm in 1974. Today, Langdon Cook serves as an Executive at Gates Capital Corporation, which was established in 1992 as a successor company to Langdon P. Cook & Co. Together with his wife, Lyn Gillmore Cook, Langdon Cook has four sons, two of whom – Whitney A. Cook and Frederick H. Cook – graduated from Hobart College, in 1999 and 2005 respectively.
It was during his sons' years at Hobart that Langdon Cook began volunteering his time and committing his resources to the Colleges. In the 1990's, he served as a member of the Campaign Steering Committee and the Parents Executive Committee. In 2002, he was appointed to the Hobart and William Smith Board of Trustees where his business insight was put to good use on the Steering Committee for Campaign for the Colleges and on the Investments and Governance Committees. For the past five years, he has chaired the Institutional Advancement, Capital Resources and Communications Committee, ably guiding the Colleges through the recession while overseeing one of the most active philanthropic periods in the Colleges' history. With precision and dedication, he has advised on the creation of strategic development initiatives that have allowed Hobart and William Smith to generate more than $200 million for Campaign for the Colleges, twice the amount raised in the Colleges' last campaign.
Langdon Cook's confidence in the future of Hobart and William Smith Colleges was recently translated into one of the largest donations the Colleges have ever received from parents who themselves did not graduate from Hobart and William Smith. To leverage the value of their philanthropy and inspire other parents to make leadership gifts, Langdon and Lyn Cook partnered with the Colleges to create the Cook Parents Circle, a new giving society that honors non-alum families who have made significant contributions to Hobart and William Smith. The inaugural induction and celebration of The Cook Parents Circle will take place in New York City in fall 2012.