Sally Kornbluth Will Be the Eighteenth President of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology

Sally A. Kornbluth has been selected to serve as the 18th president of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. She will take on her new role on January 1.

A distinguished researcher and dedicated mentor, Dr. Kornbluth has served for the past eight years as provost at Duke University in Durham, North Carolina. She also is the Jo Rae Wright University Professor of Biology at the university. Dr. Kornbluth first joined the faculty at Duke in 1994.

“The ethos of MIT, where groundbreaking research and education are woven into the DNA of the institution, is thrilling to me,” Dr. Kornbluth said. “The primary role of academic leadership is in attracting outstanding scholars and students, and in supporting their important work. And when it comes to the impact of that work, MIT is unparalleled — in the power of its innovations, in its ability to move those innovations into the world, and in its commitment to discovery, creativity, and excellence.”

Dr. Kornbluth added that “My greatest joy as a leader has always been in facilitating and amplifying the work of others. I am eager to meet all the brilliant, entrepreneurial people of MIT, and to champion their research, teaching, and learning.”

Born in Paterson, New Jersey, Dr. Kornbluth grew up in nearby Fair Lawn. Her father, George, was a music-loving accountant; her mother, Myra, was an opera singer who performed regularly at the New York City Opera and the Metropolitan Opera.

After earning a bachelor’s degree in political science at Williams College in Williamstown, Massachusetts, Dr. Kornbluth received a scholarship to attend the University of Cambridge in England for two years as a Herchel Smith Scholar at Emmanuel College, ultimately earning a bachelor’s degree in genetics. She returned to the U.S. to pursue a Ph.D. in molecular oncology at Rockefeller University in New York and then went on to postdoctoral training at the University of California, San Diego.

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