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Transition in the School of Public Affairs

Dean William LeoGrande to Step Down at Close of Academic Year

William LeoGrande, Dean of the School of Public Affairs. Photo Credit: Jeff Watts.

William LeoGrande, Dean of the School of Public Affairs. Photo Credit: Jeff Watts.

William M. LeoGrande, dean of the School of Public Affairs (SPA), will step down at the end of this academic year as dean and return to the faculty in the fall of 2013 following a sabbatical.

Dean LeoGrande was appointed as dean in 2003 after having served as interim dean for three years. During his tenure, SPA solidified its position as one of the leading public affairs schools in the United States and experienced growth in its faculty, student body, and programs. Under Dean LeoGrande’s leadership, SPA’s full-time faculty increased from 51 to 71, and support for faculty research increased markedly. He supported the creation of new research centers and institutes, which have built SPA’s reputation as a nexus for the study of politics and policy and as a venue in which scholars and policy-makers can come together to discuss important policy issues.

With Dean LeoGrande’s support, SPA led the university in the development of innovative executive education programs. The Key Executive Leadership Masters in Public Administration program was lauded by the National Association of Schools of Public Affairs and Administration (NASPAA) and has grown to enroll over 300 students annually.

Alumni participation and development activity in the school has also grown significantly during Dean LeoGrande’s tenure. Expanding the membership of the Dean’s Advisory Council, he added key alumni leaders and public sector professionals to provide SPA advice across a broad range of issues. He established twelve new endowed scholarships for SPA undergraduate and graduate students, two new research awards for faculty, and the Jonathan N. Helfat endowed professorship. Annual alumni giving between 2002 and 2010 more than tripled, and SPA’s alumni participation rate in annual giving is one of the highest in the university.

Of his dedicated service, President Kerwin said: “For more than a decade, Bill LeoGrande provided exceptional leadership to the School of Public Affairs. He can take great pride in what he and SPA have accomplished and he has earned the gratitude and respect of every member of the American University community.”

A national search for a new dean will be initiated as soon as possible. Details about the search and announcement of an event celebrating Dean LeoGrande’s contributions will be shared at a later date.

For further information, please contact Dan Mackeben via e-mail or at 202-885-3968