Dear Campus Community,
I am pleased to announce that Benjamin E. Hermalin has been chosen to serve as our next executive vice chancellor and provost following a competitive national search that attracted a large number of highly qualified candidates. Ben will begin transitioning into the role over the next several months, with his appointment effective on July 1, 2022.
Ben currently serves as the vice provost for the faculty. In this role, he has done an outstanding job overseeing all academic personnel matters on our campus. I have enormous respect for his successful efforts to maintain the excellence of Berkeley's faculty and academic staff while advancing our commitment to diversity, equity, inclusion, belonging and justice. As a member of my leadership cabinet, Ben has played an important role in helping our campus navigate the COVID-19 pandemic and has been a consistent source of wise counsel and strong leadership. His dedication to our university, our mission, and our values is evident and extraordinary.
As the chief academic officer and chief operating officer of university, the role of the executive vice chancellor and provost is extremely important. Effective leadership of a campus as large and complex as ours requires what I refer to as a “two in the box” structure, where responsibilities are shared and the connection between the chancellor and provost is very strong. Based on my years of close collaboration with Ben, and the supportive feedback we received from his peers and colleagues in the course of the selection process, I look forward to what I know will be a productive and beneficial partnership.
Ben is a professor in economics and the Thomas & Alison Schneider Distinguished Professor of Finance in the Haas School of Business. After receiving his bachelor’s degree from Princeton University, he earned his doctorate from Massachusetts Institute of Technology in 1988 and joined UC Berkeley as an assistant professor that same year. Throughout his 33-year tenure at our university Ben has served in a number of leadership roles, including chair of the Berkeley Division of the Academic Senate, chair of the Department of Economics, interim dean of the Haas School of Business, and associate dean for academic affairs and chair of the faculty at Haas. Regardless of his role, from the classroom to California Hall, Ben has prioritized providing our students, staff, and faculty with what they need to thrive and make the most of what our campus has to offer.
In the course of our search, Ben impressed the search committee with his deep commitment to public education and academic excellence, and his devotion to supporting and sustaining a campus community that embodies diversity of origin, identity, perspective, and academic discipline. Ben’s calm demeanor, humility, and deep experience will continue to be an asset to me and the campus leadership team as we work to advance Berkeley’s preeminence in what is a complex, challenging, and competitive environment. I want to thank the members of the search committee for their efforts and for the outcome.
You can read more about Ben on Berkeley News.
Catherine P. Koshland will continue on as interim executive vice chancellor and provost through the end of this academic year. I would like to take this opportunity to acknowledge and thank Cathy for her wonderful leadership and service in this interim role and throughout her illustrious career on campus.
Please join me in congratulating Ben on this well-deserved promotion and in supporting his success as our next executive vice chancellor and provost at Berkeley.
Carol T. Christ