University of Minnesota Executive Vice President and Provost Karen Hanson has announced the appointment of Laura Bloomberg as dean of the Humphrey School of Public Affairs, effective June 12, 2017. The appointment is for a two-year term, subject to the approval of the Board of Regents, and accompanies the provost’s announcement of plans to launch a national search in 2018.

Dr. Bloomberg has served as associate dean and principal academic officer since 2013 and as dean, will serve as the chief executive officer of the Humphrey School. She succeeds Eric Schwartz, who announced that he will step down in June to assume the presidency of Refugees International, a global refugee protection organization in Washington, DC. Bloomberg will be the first woman to hold the position.

In her announcement Provost Hanson said, “Laura’s experience as associate dean and principal academic officer of the Humphrey School over the past four years will serve the school well, providing valuable leadership continuity for growing and newly launched initiatives and effective strategic leadership as the school turns toward planning for the future.” (Read provost’s full statement).

During her tenure as associate dean, Bloomberg has contributed to a wide range of new academic programs and school initiatives that have helped to advance the school’s mission. She has led efforts to launch and implement a Master of Human Rights degree program, a PhD degree, a new certificate in election administration and a Humphrey summer institute for underrepresented college students with interests in public affairs.

She has been deeply engaged in the global expansion of the School, including through her leadership in the development of the Mandela Washington Fellowship to support young leaders from countries across Africa. Bloomberg has also played a key leadership role in the Network of Schools of Public Policy, Affairs, and Administration (NASPAA), the national professional association for schools of public affairs.

“It is my distinct honor to serve as dean of the Humphrey School,” said Bloomberg. “I’m proud to lead this remarkable institution of dedicated and talented scholars and students, all working to make a positive difference in people’s lives locally, nationally, and globally. We have ambitious goals for the future and I’m eager to serve a community that is so enthusiastic about achieving them.”

Bloomberg previously served as executive director of the University’s Center for Integrative Leadership, a joint initiative of the Humphrey School, Carlson School of Management, School of Public Health, and College of Education and Human Development. Prior to joining the Humphrey School in 2007, Bloomberg served in nonprofit and educational leadership roles, including as a K-12 district administrator and program evaluation researcher and consultant.