Paul Wright Chair in Mathematics

The Paul Wright Chair in Mathematics was established by Hugh Knowlton, Jr. ’41 and William J. Schieffelin III ’41 to honor the life, work, and example of one of the School’s most respected and admired masters. Since 1987, Jonathan Choate ’60 has held this Chair.
Jonathan Choate graduated from Groton in 1960. He returned to coach JV ice hockey shortly after he graduated from Colby, and two years later became a full-time member of the math department faculty. Jon was a state winner of the Presidential Award for Excellence in Teaching in 1988, received an Outstanding Educator Award from Colby College in 1997, and was recently elected to the Massachusetts Mathematics Teacher Hall of Fame. He has an MA from Bowdoin College.

Jon also was a co-principal investigator for the National Science Foundation’s “Fractals and Chaos” project and, as an outgrowth of that work, co-authored The Dynamics Toolkit, four books covering topics in fractal geometry and chaos theory. He has served on both the National Council of Teachers of Mathematics' Algebra and Discrete Mathematics task forces, and has given more than 200 professional talks at the state, national, and international level. His column, Geometer's Corner, is a regular feature in COMAP’s Consortium newsletter, and he has created a website dedicated to the teaching of three-dimensional geometry (  

In his most recent out-of-school project, Jon has co-authored a series of books that use Google's “Sketch-Up,” a three-dimensional, architectural design program, to teach geometry at the secondary level. At Groton, Jon holds the Paul W. Wright Chair in Mathematics. He is an assistant varsity football and varsity ice hockey coach, and lives in campus housing with his wife, Kathy Leggat, Groton’s academic dean. Jon enjoys landscaping and bicycling and likes to spend as much time as he can during the summer in boats.

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