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MacArthur Foundation vice president to become new dean of Syracuse University’s Maxwell School
MacArthur Foundation vice president to become new dean of Syracuse University’s Maxwell SchoolMay 12, 2003Cynthia J. Moritzcjmoritz@syr.edu
Mitchel Wallerstein G’72, vice president of the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation, has been named the new dean of the Maxwell School of Citizenship and Public Affairs. He will step into his new position on July 28, when current dean and newly named University Professor John L. Palmer steps down from the deanship after 15 years.
“I am deeply honored to be invited to return to my graduate alma mater as dean of the Maxwell School,” Wallerstein says. “In many ways my entire career has been a form of preparation for this opportunity. I have been engaged in teaching, research and public policy analysis and formulation, working from many vantage points: academe, a policy think tank, government and philanthropy. These are intellectually challenging times, when the world we’ve known is changing rapidly and often very dramatically. I am eager to work in the years ahead on behalf of-and in collaboration with-the Maxwell School’s outstanding faculty and staff, highly motivated students and loyal and generous alumni.”
SU’s Vice Chancellor and Provost, Deborah A. Freund, is enthusiastic about the appointment. “Wallerstein has a varied and very impressive background. He is someone who understands well all of our audiences because he has worked among them and excelled. On top of that, he was the unanimous choice of all groups that met him and he is coming home to Syracuse, the very place he got started and met his wife. I look forward to welcoming both to Syracuse University this summer.”
Wallerstein has served for five years as vice president of the MacArthur Foundation, one of the world’s 10 largest philanthropic organizations, with assets of nearly $4-billion. He has directed the foundation’s international grantmaking division, known as the Program on Global Security and Sustainability (GSS), which makes grants in conservation and sustainable development, international peace and security, population and reproductive health, human rights and issues related to globalization. In 2003, GSS will make approximately $72-million in grants in 85 countries, focusing particularly on Russia, India, Mexico and Nigeria, where the foundation maintains overseas offices.
“Mitchel Wallerstein has provided strong and effective leadership to the MacArthur Foundation’s international program,” says Jonathan Fanton, president of the MacArthur Foundation. “He understands the interrelatedness of complex forces on population, the environment, human rights and the search for a more just and secure world. Under his leadership, GSS has appointed many talented new staff members who have brought fresh energy and perspective and strengthened the collegial values that bring forth our best work. Drawing on an immense network of past associations, Mitch has brought a steady flow of interesting people to the foundation and expanded the pool of expert advisors.”Fanton adds, “We have valued Mitch’s experience, his wise counsel on international issues, his good humor and the energy and sound judgment he has provided as a senior officer of the Foundation. He is an excellent colleague who has made many important contributions to our common cause. We extend our warm good wishes as he takes on an important new challenge.”From 1993-1997, Wallerstein was deputy assistant secretary of defense for counterproliferation policy, the first presidential appointee in this position, and senior representatative for trade security policy. In the former capacity, he developed and implemented policies and programs to block the proliferation of nuclear, biological and chemical weapons and their means of delivery and worked to assure that the U.S. military would be better prepared to deal with such threats in the future. In the latter capacity, he was responsible for defense policy regarding the problem of protecting sensitive technology; he participated in a number of international negotiations on the design of national security export controls in the post-Cold War era. During his tenure in the Department of Defense, Wallerstein helped found and co-chaired the Senior Defense Group on Proliferation at NATO. In January 1997, he was awarded the Secretary of Defense Medal for Outstanding Public Service, and he received the Bronze Palm to that award in April 1998.
Prior to his service in the U.S. government, Wallerstein was the deputy executive officer of the National Research Council (NRC) of the National Academies of Sciences and Engineering, which is a private, non-profit organization in Washington that undertakes policy studies for and provides advice to the executive branch and Congress. While at the NRC, he also directed a series of highly acclaimed studies for the U.S. government on various other national security issues.
Wallerstein’s previous full-time academic career includes five years on the faculty at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, as well as an earlier tenure-track appointment in the political science department at Holy Cross College. From 1985-1989, he was an adjunct professor in the graduate program in science, technology and public policy at George Washington University; from 1987-1993, he served in a similar capacity at the School of Foreign Service at Georgetown University; and from 1992-1997, he was an adjunct professor at the Paul H. Nitze School of Advanced International Studies at the Johns Hopkins University. Immediately prior to joining the MacArthur Foundation in 1998, Wallerstein held an appointment as Distinguished Research Professor at the National Defense University in Washington.
“Mitch Wallerstein has an ideal background for this position,” says David M. Rubin, dean of SU’s Newhouse School of Public Communications and chair of the Maxwell deanship search committee. “He knows the world of philanthropy, he held a position of great importance in government service, he understands the research enterprise and he is a very, very nice guy who will impress Maxwell alumni and potential donors. From the very first time we on the search committee met him, we knew we had a very strong candidate. We are delighted that Vice Chancellor Freund was able to conclude this hire successfully.”
Wallerstein is the author of numerous books, articles, monographs and other publications. He is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations and the International Institute for Strategic Studies. He holds a Ph.D. (1978) and M.S. (1977) in political science from M.I.T., a master’s degree in public administration (1972) from Maxwell and an A.B. (1971) from Dartmouth College. He is married with two college-age children, and his wife, Susan Perlik G’72, received her master’s degree in special education from Syracuse.