Duke Hires A Headhunter & Names A Search Committee To Find A New Fuqua Dean

Bill Boulding, dean of the Fuqua School of Business at Duke University. File photo

Nearly a year after announcements that Fuqua School of Business Dean Bill Boulding would be stepping down from his post, Duke University has hired a search consultant and named a search committee to find a new leader for its business school.

When then-Provost Sally Kornbluth made the internal announcement on Nov. 2 of last year, the university expected to begin an international search late in the spring. But Kornbluth’s departure to become president of MIT delayed the naming of a search committee until this past week. In any case, Boulding, in deciding not to take on a third term as dean, had agreed to stay in the job until his successor arrived.

Since becoming dean in 2011, Boulding has been a highly effective leader, a strong advocate for business education, and one of the longest serving business school deans in the world. Boulding is the longest serving dean among Duke’s of 10 schools. An accomplished scholar with a passion for helping advance business as a force for good, he also has chaired the board of the Graduate Management Admission Council (GMAC®), which administers the GMAT exam. Fuqua, recently ranked 10th in the U.S. for its full-time MBA program by LinkedIn, has long been one of the world’s premier business schools. Poets&Quants’ current MBA ranking puts Fuqua in 12th place, just behind Michigan Ross and ahead of Cornell Johnson.


Fuqua Professor Ashleigh Shelby Rosette will lead the search committee

In the 2022 announcement on Boulding’s decision to step down, Kornbluth praised the dean for his leadership. “As you all know,” she wrote, “Bill has served as Dean since 2011, a tenure of highly accomplished service. During this time, Fuqua has produced an unprecedented level of successful curricular innovation in both new and existing programs that has enabled additional investments in faculty and student distinction. The faculty’s dedication to teaching, matched with extremely productive research, has been complemented by exceptional student quality that is at an all-time high. In addition to being one of the most selective business schools, Fuqua is also one of the most diverse. Over the last 11 years, Fuqua has raised record levels of funding to support student, faculty, and program excellence, and has invested in developing a world class physical infrastructure commensurate with its intellectual endeavors.

The 18-member search committee will be chaired by Ashleigh Shelby Rosette, a leadership professor who has been at Fuqua since 2005 and until this year served as a senior associate dean of executive programs since 2020. Heidrick & Struggles, the executive search firm, has been hired to assist in the search. According to the university announcement, candidate nominations and comments about the position are to be sent via email to FuquaDean@heidrick.com

The search committee is composed largely of Fuqua faculty members but also includes Associate Dean for Admissions Shari Hubert, Associate Dean for Global Marketing Elizabeth Hogan, School of Medicine Assistant Professor Erica Taylor, Nicholas School of the Environment Professor Timothy Johnson, Fuqua Board of Visitors Chair David Snow, and two student representatives, Taryn Felder and Arya Diwase. Diwase is an international student from India pursuing a dual MBA/MPP degree at Duke, while Felder is a student in Fuqua’s global executive MBA program who will graduate next year.

Boulding became dean after serving in a variety of administrative roles, including deputy dean, senior associate dean for programs, and associate dean for the Daytime MBA program.  He joined Fuqua in the fall of 1984 as a marketing professor. He received his BA in Economics from Swarthmore College and his Ph.D. in managerial sciences and applied economics from The Wharton School. His research interests lie at the intersection of management, marketing, and strategy.

In his own statement last year, Boulding said he believed the school was in a strong position. “In every way,” he wrote, “the Fuqua School is stronger today than at any time in our now 50-year history. Because of this strength, now is the time for someone else to write the next chapter of the Fuqua story. I plan to stay on as dean for the rest of my term and until a new dean is in place in 2024, but have decided not to seek another 5-year term.


Boulding then cited a number of “factors that make me feel confident in the health of our school:”

  • Sustained innovation: Even for a school built on the premise of relevance, with innovation in our DNA, we have embarked on a period of unprecedented innovation. We launched new programs and reinvented existing ones – consistently staying ahead of our peers. We introduced programs to harness the power of big data; brought the Science Technology Engineering and Math (STEM) designation, and its accompanying visa benefits, to the business school industry; and rethought teaching technology to simultaneously emphasize accessibility and human connectivity. The market has welcomed these innovations, allowing us to create a virtuous cycle of investment in student, faculty, staff, and program excellence.
  • Student quality—inbound: We continue to attract talented students from all over the world who represent the diversity of the global workforce. Across our programs we are roughly at gender parity. On a relative basis we can look to our Daytime MBA students to see how we stack up against competition. Given our ability to successfully differentiate Fuqua, we have become increasingly attractive as an MBA destination. In fact, we are now among the five most selective business schools in this country. Importantly, this increased selectivity does not mean we have become exclusive in the wrong ways. Rather, we have achieved inclusive excellence. Of the elite business schools, we are the most diverse, with women making up 48% of the Class of 2024, students drawn from 55 countries, and 25% of our U.S. students identifying as underrepresented minorities. At the same time, our entering class GMAT range rose by 10 points year over year to a record high. No disrespect to our past graduates, but every year our students get better and better.
  • Student quality—outbound: This past year saw record employment performance across our programs with big jumps in pay for our MQM and Daytime MBA students. While the official data have not yet been released for the MQM graduates, results for our Daytime graduates show both record-high job acceptance rates and salaries. We continue to partner with many top-tier employers and attract new employers each year. All of this points to the strength of our graduates, across all of our programs, in the marketplace and the immediate value our alumni bring to their companies. In addition to being a top-five destination for students, we are a top-five destination from the perspective of employment markets.
  • Faculty quality: We welcomed more than half a dozen new faculty members in marketing, strategy, accounting, and finance, including Mike Krzyzewski–Coach K–who recently retired from Duke as the all-time winningest coach in Division I men’s college basketball. Coach K will continue to inform how we teach leadership through his work with our Fuqua/Coach K Center for Leadership and Ethics (COLE). Our new faculty join an existing group that leads business schools across the globe on a per capita basis in publishing their research findings in the elite journals. Moreover, given the number of rising stars on our faculty, we are on track to be in a position of sustained intellectual leadership for years to come.
  • Integration with Big Duke: Over the summer, the Duke Innovation & Entrepreneurship Initiative (I&E) transitioned to its new home at Fuqua. This transition has already paid dividends for Fuqua students with new courses and career support for those choosing to enter the world of start-ups. We think the transition will also greatly benefit the entire University, bringing together more robust networks of students from across campus with an interest in entrepreneurship. The change also provides a mechanism to support Fuqua faculty teaching in the undergraduate I&E Certificate program, something that’s both exciting for our faculty and great for the undergraduate students.
  • Great facilities: If you haven’t seen the latest addition to the Fuqua campus, please visit and stay at the JB Duke, which is a beautiful four-diamond property that serves our Global Executive and Weekend Executive MBA students, along with our non-degree executive education participants. It felt a bit lonely during the height of COVID, but is now back to being a bustling destination supporting events at Fuqua and on the Duke campus.
  • Alumni engagement and support: Our alumni and broader community continue to fuel Fuqua in amazing ways. Last year, close to 2,000 alumni gave back to the school through volunteer efforts – from recruiting prospective students to bringing together the alumni community and everything in between. Alumni have also stepped up financial contributions dramatically, leading us to record levels of unrestricted Annual Fund support and endowed gifts for scholarships, faculty, and programs. There is still much to do to be competitive with our peers, but your generosity is inspiring and critical to advancing our mission.

“Thank you,” added Boulding, “from the bottom of my heart, for the role each of you has played in these successes and more. I am thankful beyond measure for the privilege of serving Team Fuqua for so many years. While my tenure may be ending in 2024, you can rest assured that we will not take our foot off the gas during thistransition. After all, we are Team Fuqua, which means we will continue to hold ourselves to the highest standards of excellence as we constantly aspire to relevance and seek to improve the world through our ideas and our graduates.”


In addition to Rosette, the other members of the search committee are

  • Kerry Abrams, James B. Duke and Benjamin N. Duke Dean of the School of Law and Distinguished Professor of Law
  • Wilfred Amaldoss, Thomas A. Finch Jr. Professor of Business Administration
  • James Anton, Hanes Corporation Foundation Professor of Business Administration
  • Arya Diwase, Student representative
  • Scott Dyreng, Professor of Accounting
  • Taryn Felder, Student representative
  • Grainne Fitzsimons, George C. Lamb, Jr. University Distinguished Professor
  • Sharique Hasan, Associate Professor of Business Administration
  • Elizabeth Hogan, Associate Dean for Global Marketing
  • Shari Hubert, Associate Dean for Admissions
  • Timothy Johnson, Professor of the Practice of Energy and the Environment, Nicholas School of the Environment
  • Jamie Jones, Associate Professor of the Practice and Director of Duke Innovation & Entrepreneurship
  • Adriano Rampini, Douglas and Josie Breeden Distinguished Professor of Financial Economics
  • David Snow, Chair, Fuqua School of Business Board of Visitors
  • Robert Swinney, Professor of Business Administration
  • Erica Taylor, Assistant Professor of Orthopaedic Surgery, School of Medicine
  • Yehua Wei, Associate Professor of Business Administration





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