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Kellogg Turns to Interim Dean As Search Continues

Kathleen Hagerty has been named interim dean of the Kellogg School of Management
Photos by Justin Runquist

It looks like Northwestern University will need more time to find a full-time successor to Kellogg School of Management Dean Sally Blount. The school today (July 12) named a familiar Kellogg face, Kathleen M. Hagerty, interim dean, when Blount formally leaves her position on Aug. 31.

Hagerty, a long-time finance professor who joined Kellogg in 1984 just before earning her Ph.D. in economics from Stanford University, has been senior associate dean of faculty and research. Her entire professional and personal life has been shaped by Kellogg. She is married to William Rogerson, a professor of economics at Northwestern.

The university announced that the search for a permanent dean to succeed Blount (’92) is ongoing. The university put together a search committee, chaired by Kellogg finance professor Paola Sapienza, last October. Korn Ferry, the search firm, has been on board to help the committee identify a slate of candidates.


Finance Prof Kathleen Hagerty will become Kellogg’s interim dean on Aug. 1

Kellogg is now the fourth highly prominent business school to turn to an interim solution while still in search mode for a full-time leader. Late last month, UC-Berkeley’s Haas School of Business named Laura D’Andrea Tyson, a Haas economist who had been dean of the school from 1998 to 2001, as interim dean, even though the university had earlier identified three finalists for the job (see Laura Tyson Named Interim Dean At Haas). UCLA’s Anderson School of Management turned to an insider to temporarily hold down the fort when Dean Judy Olian left on July 1, picking long-time veteran professor Alfred Osborne Jr. (see UCLA Anderson Names Osborne Interim Dean).

And Cornell University put one of its former deans of the Johnson Graduate School of Management in charge of its newly formed College of Business in January when Dean Soumitra Dutta unexpectedly resigned (see Cornell B-School Dean Abruptly Resigns). Joe Thomas has been serving as interim until the search gets completed for a permanent dean at Cornell. The fact that four major U.S. business schools are all looking for deans at the same time can only complicate those searches.

In choosing Hagerty as a temporary leader, Northwestern is buying more time to get its new dean in place. Hagerty’s tenure as interim dean may well be her final role at the Kellogg School. Once the university installs a new full-time dean, Hagerty is expected to transition into Northwestern’s office of the provost to serve as associate provost for faculty, a role responsible for supporting approximately 3,700 faculty members and developing and executing the strategic vision for faculty.


The school said that Hagerty  has earned a reputation as an accomplished scholar and respected faculty leader, who has vast experience attracting and retaining world-class faculty in an increasingly competitive market for academic talent. She also has held numerous leadership positions within Kellogg, including two terms as senior associate dean of faculty and research, two terms as chair of the finance department and two years as faculty director of Kellogg’s Ph.D. programs. She also is responsible for the development of several successful academic programs that foster partnerships across the university.

Hagerty has a trio of degrees from UC-Berkeley, including an MBA in finance from the Haas School earned in 1979, an MS in operations reserarch from Berkeley’s College of Engineering in 1977, and a bachelor’s degree in mathematics in 1975.

“I am confident that Kathleen will provide a seamless transition when Dean Blount steps down later this summer and until we conclude our search,” said Provost Jonathan Holloway in a statement. “We remain committed to finding the best leadership fit and a world-class dean to build on Kellogg’s strong foundation.”


Hagerty said she is looking forward to building on the momentum Kellogg gained under Blount’s leadership. “I’m honored to assume this role and add to the myriad accomplishments of the Kellogg team under Dean Blount’s leadership,” said Hagerty in a statement.  “I look forward to partnering with faculty colleagues, as well as our staff, students, alumni and broader community, to create knowledge and educate the next generation of business leaders.”

Dean Blount said Hagerty is an excellent choice to serve as interim dean. “As a long-time member of the Kellogg faculty, no one knows the school better or has a stronger commitment to our mission than Kathleen,” said Dean Blount. “She is a deep believer in business education and a highly effective leader. I’m confident that she will maintain Kellogg’s upward trajectory and ensure continuity of everything we love about Kellogg.”


About The Author

John A. Byrne is the founder and editor-in-chief of C-Change Media, publishers of Poets&Quants and four other higher education websites. He has authored or co-authored more than ten books, including two New York Times bestsellers. John is the former executive editor of Businessweek, editor-in-chief of Businessweek. com, editor-in-chief of Fast Company, and the creator of the first regularly published rankings of business schools. As the co-founder of CentreCourt MBA Festivals, he hopes to meet you at the next MBA event in-person or online.