Definition of president in English:



  • 1The elected head of a republican state.

    ‘the Irish president’
    as title ‘President Kennedy’
    • ‘In the face of these demands, the president and the prime minister met last Tuesday for the second time to discuss a settlement.’
    • ‘Eventually Napoleon III was elected president of the French Republic only to proclaim himself Emperor after a coup in 1851.’
    • ‘Some 115 million Brazilians go to the polls on 6 October to elect a new president, and various federal and state deputies.’
    • ‘For 50 years after World War II, all of our presidents, Republican and Democrat, wore the uniform.’
    • ‘The president names the prime minister following consultation with Parliament.’
    • ‘Did it frustrate you, this situation in the Middle East, as much as it did the Republican and Democratic presidents of the United States?’
    • ‘Meetings between US presidents and Canadian prime ministers have been routine since the late 1930s.’
    • ‘Once elected, the president will nominate a prime minister who will form a government.’
    • ‘The parliament will elect a president and two vice presidents, who will form a presidential council.’
    • ‘The Republican president was eventually forced to resign in disgrace.’
    • ‘Unlike elected presidents, British prime ministers get where they are by being leader of the largest party in the House of Commons.’
    • ‘It had a democratically elected president and a Congress just as we do.’
    • ‘Historically presidents and prime ministers would give inspiring speeches to their nations, psyching them up and uniting them into one determined force to be reckoned with.’
    • ‘For seven years he has sent appeals requesting the help of the president and prime minister but has not even received an acknowledgement.’
    • ‘There will be a democratically elected president, with a cabinet, and a Prime Minister to oversee the cabinet.’
    • ‘This country is a democracy, so its president is democratically elected by a popular vote.’
    • ‘It is interesting that it has often been US Republican presidents like Reagan rather than Democrats who have hardened the alliance with Israel.’
    • ‘I'll be joined by David Gergen who's advised four presidents, Republican and Democrat, in his distinguished career in public service.’
    • ‘Everyone who says vote Democrat at any price accepts that somehow Democratic presidents have a better record than Republican presidents.’
    • ‘I never thought I'd be so well cared for by the president and the Republicans in Congress.’
    head of state, chief of state, elected head of a country
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    1. 1.1 The head of a society, council, or other organization.
      ‘the president of the European Union’
      • ‘The president of the Royal Society has told the government that scientific reasoning must be a core part of school education up until the age of 19.’
      • ‘Martin Luther King became the first president of the organization.’
      • ‘He did his apprenticeship with the then president of the Pharmaceutical Society and managed one of his shops for seven years.’
      • ‘The former president of the Transplantation Society is a supporter of Professor Hall's and accepts his explanation.’
      • ‘The fourth recipient of an honorary degree was Lord May, president of the Royal Society and a former chief scientific adviser to the Government.’
      • ‘Ip and Chow are former presidents of the Law Society, a group that is considered more conservative than the Bar Association.’
      • ‘Now, like Isaac Newton, May is president of the Royal Society, Britain's premier scientific organisation.’
      • ‘Royal Society president Lord May of Oxford has said he is ‘alarmed’ at the lack of a clear commitment to science.’
      • ‘He was a founder of the Royal Geographical Society and a president of the British Association for the Advancement of Science.’
      • ‘Samuel Pepys was the son of a London tailor and a president of the Royal Society.’
      • ‘Lowe is the 15th president of the organization, and will serve as the national chair for the next two years.’
      • ‘And we'll also have gorillas, crows, dogs, and the new president of the Royal Society of London.’
      • ‘For the second time in less than eight months, the Simon Fraser Student Society has lost its president.’
      • ‘I spoke to all the society presidents as soon as this came up to ensure everyone was aware of the university policy.’
      • ‘It's hard to be interested in winning when your organization - from the president down to the manager - isn't.’
      • ‘As a former president of the Society of the Irish Motor Industry, Forte is well aware of issues facing the sector.’
      • ‘However, if there is a dispute between the Church and State, both sides will have to refer the matter to the president of the Law Society of Ireland.’
      • ‘The president of the UFO Society of Ireland, Betty Meyler, believes the flying objects are a sign of life on other planets.’
      • ‘The Park Service ignored a letter of protest signed by the presidents of seven scientific societies on December 16, 2003.’
      • ‘Both have served as presidents of local business organizations.’
    2. 1.2 The head of certain colleges.
      • ‘Quality and accountability continue to be the focus of community college presidents.’
      • ‘Twenty-five years ago, college presidents reported spending about one-third of their time in contact with individuals external to the university.’
      • ‘I was encouraged when college presidents, provosts, and professors at about half of the 70 schools I contacted were willing to speak to me.’
      • ‘Some scholars are predicting that as many as 70% of all community college presidents will be retiring in the next 10 years.’
      • ‘It is entirely proper for the president of a college to be concerned with the institution's public image.’
      • ‘Baker and Upshaw assert that understanding and supporting the college mission is a basic expectation for community college presidents and their leadership teams.’
      • ‘This person assisted the college presidents in alliance administrative matters.’
      • ‘These college presidents also worry about the persistence of poverty in many American communities, often in those where campuses are located.’
      • ‘The executive director is on a par with the college presidents but does not have an allegiance to a particular campus, thus serving as a neutral party.’
      • ‘There once was a time when American college presidents enjoyed the confidence of 61 percent of the public.’
      • ‘There has been plenty of discussion in the last few years of the need for college presidents to speak out more often and thoughtfully on public issues.’
      • ‘A new president of the college, Michael S. Bassis, took office last summer.’
      • ‘College presidents mobilize to promote liberal education for all students.’
      • ‘The perceptions of college presidents in the 1970's, consequently, would differ from their perceptions today.’
      • ‘Letters over the past year from the staff on the matter have not elicited a response from the college president.’
      • ‘The staff's letters this past year to the president of the college have, like those of the year before, not yielded a response.’
      • ‘She acknowledges that the classic transition for presidents of liberal arts colleges is to move up to the next rung on the presidential ladder by running a university.’
      • ‘Reminders from the staff to the college president during the past twelve months have again gone unanswered.’
      • ‘The responsibilities of technical and community college presidents have been vastly expanded in the last decade.’
      • ‘Ms. Smith was also supported by her parents and her college president.’
      head, chief, director, leader, governor, principal, master, chancellor, vice chancellor, dean, rector, warden, provost, captain, figurehead
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    3. 1.3North American The head of a university.
      • ‘This development alarmed the leadership of the science and technology community, including university presidents.’
      • ‘In March the university announced that the president is retiring from office.’
      • ‘The chief executive officer of a university is the president, who is usually appointed by the government.’
      • ‘All too often, the current generation of university presidents fails to share this appreciation.’
      • ‘How many university presidents sit on corporate boards of corporations, especially those with whom their university has entered various partnerships?’
      • ‘Only 2 percent of all women presidents head major research universities.’
      • ‘Are public university presidents required, like other government officials, to submit to the review of an ethics commission?’
      • ‘The council endorsed the policy, which was enacted by the university president.’
      • ‘He will end his trip with a stop in Boston to hold talks with the presidents of Harvard University and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology on expanding educational exchanges.’
      • ‘There is also a desire to emulate the corporate world, which is understandable as many presidents of elite universities sit on corporate boards.’
      • ‘Still others take on administrative roles as chairs, deans, or perhaps even university presidents.’
      • ‘Several university presidents chaired committees and, following customary practices, earned an additional fee for this responsibility.’
      • ‘If something occurs that they don't like, they're apt to dial the university president directly.’
      • ‘That December, however, the university president notified the professor of her intent to dismiss him.’
      • ‘A new president of Murray State University, F. King Alexander, took office this past winter.’
      • ‘Just over half of the university presidents in our studies led public as opposed to private institutions.’
      • ‘It's fascinating to learn how much your university president makes - or the dean of students for that matter.’
      • ‘It's also easy to overstate the degree to which university presidents ever were opinion leaders.’
      • ‘What rules of engagement do university presidents set for their campuses?’
      • ‘Some nights ago my partner and I had dinner with the president of the University of Southern California and his wife.’
      head, chief, director, leader, governor, principal, master, chancellor, vice chancellor, dean, rector, warden, provost, captain, figurehead
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    4. 1.4North American The head of a company.
      • ‘Foster was the president of Shaker Title Services, which is now defunct.’
      • ‘Ecuador's state oil company president resigned Tuesday for failing to halt a steady decline in production.’
      chairman, chairwoman
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  • 2Christian Church
    The celebrant at a Eucharist.

    • ‘The report sees the president at the Eucharist as representing both the Body and the Head of the Church.’
    • ‘The old typology understands the president at the Eucharist not in terms of a bare symbolism, but in terms of a symbolic realism.’
    • ‘It was important, the president and the clergyman said, that they hear from a representative woman.’
    • ‘The challenge cannot be remanded solely to rectors and presidents; it must effectively engage the entire community of believers.’


Late Middle English: via Old French from Latin praesident- ‘sitting before’ (see preside).