ad·​min·​is·​tra·​tor əd-ˈmi-nə-ˌstrā-tər How to pronounce administrator (audio)
: a person legally vested with the right of administration of an estate
: one who administers especially business, school, or governmental affairs
: a person who manages a computer network or system
network administrators
: a priest appointed to administer a diocese or parish temporarily

Example Sentences

Her eldest son will act as the administrator of the estate.
Recent Examples on the Web The employee who said Foresteire would sneak up on her spent a tearful hour telling a high-ranking female school administrator that Foresteire wouldn’t stop touching her, the police report says. Stephanie Ebbert,, 18 Nov. 2022 After decades working as a computer network administrator in Ottawa, his life now echoes the nomadic ways of his father, his grandfather, his great grandfather and so on, going back some 15 generations. Michael M. Phillips, WSJ, 17 Nov. 2022 Farrell said the board will begin interviews later this month to select a consultant to assist in its search for a new administrator. Sue Kiesewetter, The Enquirer, 16 Nov. 2022 In the most recent recession, Ascensus, a retirement plan administrator, said that 21% of employers that use its 401(k) services suspended their contributions from March to September 2020, The Wall Street Journal reported. Elisabeth Buchwald, USA TODAY, 15 Nov. 2022 In the Trustee Area 2 race, Debbie Justeson, a governing board member, led with 64.94 percent compared to Megan Dunn, a public health administrator, at 35.06 percent. San Diego Union-Tribune, 10 Nov. 2022 Farrant, who runs a Christian ministry with her husband, won 53% of the vote in the district 3 runoff against Michael Daniels, a college administrator, who won 47% percent, with 96% percent of precincts reporting. Leslie Postal, Orlando Sentinel, 9 Nov. 2022 Her father worked as a surgeon in Saudi Arabia, whilst her mother gave up her job as a hospital administrator to care for her and her siblings. CNN, 2 Nov. 2022 New York City has resisted calls for a third-party administrator to run the facility and pleaded with federal judge Laura Swain in June for a chance to make changes. Jon Haworth, ABC News, 31 Oct. 2022 See More

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'administrator.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

Word History


Middle English administratour, borrowed from Anglo-French, borrowed from Latin administātor "person in charge, manager," from administrāre "to administer" + -tor, agent suffix

First Known Use

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Time Traveler
The first known use of administrator was in the 15th century

Dictionary Entries Near administrator

Cite this Entry

“Administrator.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 29 Nov. 2022.

Kids Definition



ad·​min·​is·​tra·​tor əd-ˈmin-ə-ˌstrāt-ər How to pronounce administrator (audio)
: a person who administers especially business, school, or government affairs

Legal Definition



ad·​min·​i·​stra·​tor əd-ˈmi-nə-ˌstrā-tər How to pronounce administrator (audio)
: a person appointed by a probate court to manage the distribution of the assets in the estate of a person who has died without leaving a valid will or leaving a will that does not name an executor able or willing to perform see also administratrix, letters of administration at letter sense 2 compare executor, personal representative
administrator ad litem
: an administrator appointed to represent an estate that is a necessary party to a lawsuit
administrator cum testamento annexo
: administrator with the will annexed in this entry
administrator de bonis non \ -​dē-​ˈbō-​nis-​ˈnän, -​dā-​ˈbō-​nis-​ˈnōn \
: an administrator appointed to administer the remaining assets in the estate when the preceding administrator or executor can or will no longer perform
administrator pendente lite \ -​pen-​ˈden-​tē-​ˈlī-​tē, -​pen-​ˈden-​tā-​ˈlē-​tā \
: special administrator in this entry
administrator with the will annexed
: an administrator appointed to administer an estate where the will names no executor or where the named executor is incapable of performing or unwilling to perform

called also administrator cum testamento annexo

ancillary administrator
: a subordinate administrator appointed to administer the assets of an estate that are located in a different jurisdiction from the one where the deceased was domiciled and where the primary administration of the estate is taking place
foreign administrator
: an administrator appointed in another state
general administrator
: an administrator appointed to administer the entire estate of a deceased person in accordance with the laws of intestacy or in accordance with the will if there is one compare special administrator in this entry
independent administrator
: an administrator whose administration of the estate is entirely or mostly unsupervised by the probate court
public administrator
: a public officer who administers the estates of deceased people when there is no one else willing or entitled to perform
: an administrator appointed in some states for the sole purpose of being responsible for the assets in an estate pending settlement of a dispute or when there is doubt as to who should be appointed administrator
special administrator
: an administrator appointed to administer only a designated part of the deceased person's estate
: an administrator appointed for the sole purpose of being responsible for the assets in an estate usually in some emergency (as a will contest) compare general administrator in this entry
: a person that administers
especially, often capitalized : the head of a government agency

More from Merriam-Webster on administrator

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