noun, plural chair·men.

  1. the presiding officer of a meeting, committee, board, etc.
  2. the administrative head of a department in a high school, college, or university.
  3. someone employed to carry or wheel a person in a chair.

verb (used with object), chair·maned or chair·manned, chair·man·ing or chair·man·ning.

  1. to act as or be chairman of (a meeting, committee, etc.).

noun plural -men

  1. Also called: chairperson, (fem) chairwoman a person who presides over a company’s board of directors, a committee, a debate, an administrative department, etc
  2. history someone who carries a sedan chair

1650s, “occupier of a chair of authority,” from chair (n.) + man (n.). Meaning “member of a corporate body chosen to preside at meetings” is from c.1730. Chairwoman in this sense first attested 1752; chairperson 1971.

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