Purdue University trustees voted unanimously to choose France Cordova as the next president, the university announced this afternoon.
Cordova, chancellor of the University of California Riverside, will replace Martin Jischke after he retires June 30.
Today's decision ends a seven-month search. In a statement, Chairman Tim McGinley said Cordova's resume was "truly out of this world," and that she has "distinguished herself as a scientist, an administrator and a creative writer. She is truly a Renaissance person."
Cordova, 59, earned a doctor in physics at California Institute of Technology after graduating from Stanford University with a degree in English. She has been a scientist and administrator at NASA.
Cordova has 11 younger siblings, and spent her earliest years in Europe. Her father was chief of missions for the U.S. relief mission CARE.