When Babson President Len Schlesinger announced he would be stepping down at the end of the academic year, a search committee formed in hopes of identifying a successor who could carry the College into its 100th anniversary come 2019. On Sunday night, that successor was announced: Dr. Kerry Healey, former Lieutenant Governor of Massachusetts, and the first female ever selected to lead the school.
Healey received her bachelor’s degree from Harvard, later returning to serve as a fellow at the Harvard Kennedy School’s Institute of Politics and Harvard’s Center for Public Leadership. She has also taught at Rutgers University, Endicott College and the University of Massachusetts Lowell, all with her Ph.D. from Dublin’s Trinity College in tow.
As the 70th Lieutenant Governor of Massachusetts—a position she held from 2003 to 2007 alongside Mitt Romney—Healey helped the state’s schools reach historically high marks. Under her leadership, Massachusetts’ schools were ranked number one in the nation for the first time in both English and Math on the National Assessment of Educational Progress. She also assisted in establishing the John and Abigail Adams Scholarship to reward the state’s top students with greater access to higher education.
Healey has since served as founder and president of the Public-Private Partnership for Justice Reform in Afghanistan (PPP), assisting Afghan lawyers attend law schools here in the United States to study human rights and commercial law. As a trustee of the American University of Afghanistan, Healey has also established a program in partnership with Stanford Law School to provide Afghan women with scholarships, as well as a new program in the works designed to provide legal advice to Afghan female entrepreneurs.
“I fervently believe that education and entrepreneurship are essential in all spheres of society in order to solve economic and social problems and to create value,” said Healey in a press release. “I am honored and excited to lead Babson in its work to educate and empower entrepreneurs of all kinds knowing they will change the world for the better.”
In expanding her own global presence, Healey served as both the domestic and foreign policy advisor to the Romney for President Campaign. She has been a member of the Council on Foreign Relations since 2005, and was one of 11 responsible for collectively raising $1 billion in support of Romney’s campaign.
“As a former governor, I have a special appreciation for how Dr. Healey helped successfully lead a 60,000 person operation and a budget which exceeded 25 billion dollars,” said former New Hampshire Governor Craig Benson, chair of Babson’s Presidential Search Committee, in the release. “She was effective by breaking down silos, working with people from different backgrounds and creating innovative approaches to address some of the Commonwealth’s biggest challenges including drug abuse, homelessness, educational excellence and recidivism.”
Healey will be introduced to the Babson community today at 11 a.m., prior to assuming the role of president on July 1, 2013. Live streaming of the press conference can be accessed here.