Dean, Sawyer Business School

Staff Exempt Boston, Massachusetts


Suffolk University has partnered with Russell Reynolds Associates to assist in the search for the next Dean of the Sawyer Business School. Inquiries, nominations, and expressions of interest should be sent to:

The University

Founded in 1906, Suffolk University is a private, coeducational, nonsectarian university offering bachelor's, master's, and doctoral degree programs. In addition to the Sawyer Business School (“SBS”), the University includes the College of Arts and Sciences, the Law School, and a new school to be launched later this year, focused on public affairs and global engagement. The University enrolls more than 7,000 students and employs more than 350 full-time faculty members across a main campus in the heart of downtown Boston and a satellite campus in Madrid. Our borderless community gives students unique access to the city’s cultural and professional offerings, which are actively integrated into the student experience inside and outside the classroom.

Under the leadership of President Marisa Kelly, the University has recently developed and is now implementing Suffolk 2025, a comprehensive strategic plan that guides the investment of energy and resources to further Suffolk’s goals of integrated education, career readiness, and civic engagement.

The School

Since its founding in 1937, SBS has developed into a career-focused school, providing students with hands-on learning programs, personal support from faculty, enhanced global awareness, civic engagement projects, networking opportunities, and a diverse community of teachers and learners. SBS’s mission is to provide students with a world-class business and public service education. Our collaborations with local, national, and global community partners generate high-quality scholarship and enhance the experiential learning in our curriculum. As we move forward with the University’s strategic plan, the SBS Dean and faculty will continue to play a leadership role in the development of experiential education and its integration into the student experience across the University.

At SBS, education is extended beyond conventional boundaries with Global Travel Seminars, international internships, and study abroad experiences. Two-thirds of SBS students come from the Boston area, 20 percent are from overseas, and the rest from across the country. The diversity of the SBS learning environment – including faculty from around the world -- is intentional and important for developing cultural awareness in future leaders of global business and public service. SBS strives to graduate global-minded, knowledgeable, and socially responsible professionals who embrace innovation and change.

The Business School is AACSB-accredited and has more than 100 faculty members, 3,000 students, and 30,000 alumni around the world. The School offers a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration, with majors in Accounting, Big Data and Business Analytics, Business Economics, Information Systems, Entrepreneurship, Finance, Global Business, Management, Marketing, and Financial Wealth Management. SBS also offers graduate degrees and certificate programs ranging from the traditional MBA and Executive MBA to specialized master's degrees in Accounting, Finance, Business Analytics, Marketing, and Management Studies, and a Master of Healthcare Administration and Master of Public Administration. Graduate programs include face-to-face, fully online, and hybrid instruction.

In alignment with the University’s Strategic Plan, SBS has established the following strategic objectives:

  • Global business: To highlight the contemporary global business environment in all the programs offered.
  • Career success: To invest heavily in students’ careers and to optimize the mix of skills and experiences that can contribute to future career success.
  • Ethical behavior: To emphasize the importance of ethical behavior at both individual and organizational levels of activity.
  • Recognition: To be recognized as a leading business school by business partners.
  • Integration: To pursue an integrative view of business, spanning a range of functional areas and links between the private and public sectors.
  • Faculty excellence: To sustain an excellent and diverse faculty whose work and influence within and beyond the classroom supports the School’s global vision.
  • Student vibrancy: To reinforce a global emphasis by maintaining a vibrant and diverse mixture of regional, national, and international students.
  • Program relevance: To develop and maintain relevant, cutting-edge programs and alliances informed by the latest ideas and management practices.
  • Lifelong learning: To promote lifelong learning across the programs and services offered to students, alumni, and business partners.
  • Continuous improvement: To promote an environment that welcomes assessment and measures achievements against desired goals.

The Role

The Dean of the Sawyer Business School works collaboratively with the other deans and the leadership of the University to advance institutional goals and to ensure that the Business School continues to thrive. The Dean reports to the Provost and is responsible for more than 160 faculty members and staff members. The Dean works with a leadership team in the School that currently includes the following roles:

  • Senior Associate Dean; Dean of Graduate Programs and Academic Affairs
  • Associate Dean; Dean of Undergraduate Programs
  • Assistant Dean of Graduate Programs
  • Assistant Dean of Undergraduate Programs
  • Assistant Dean of Online Graduate Programs
  • Assistant Dean of Administration
  • Director of Undergraduate Programs
  • Director of Marketing and Communications

The Dean will provide analytical and data-driven leadership and vision, promote the visibility of the School, raise funds in support of its mission, foster a high-quality student experience to advance enrollment, develop and support faculty and staff, support research and creativity, and manage the School’s fiscal and physical resources. The Dean will develop and enhance the School’s connections with the academic, public, and private sectors, to build partnerships across Suffolk University, the city of Boston and the globe that create new opportunities for SBS students, faculty and alumni. The Dean will work closely with leaders of the business community to develop the necessary relationships to ensure that the School connects to generate new knowledge and to keep curricula relevant. The Dean will be an articulate spokesperson for the School’s vision with a passion for developing philanthropic prospects and working creatively with potential donors to secure the external support and partnerships that will allow the business school to reach the next level in activities, reach and reputation.


In addition to the day-to-day responsibilities of managing the School, the Dean is expected to focus on the following:

Raise visibility and resources

  • Achieve greater recognition for the School, including improvement in rankings, by effectively communicating to diverse audiences, delivering a clear and concise message about the School’s identity, mission, programs, and achievements; maintain accreditations
  • Lead fundraising efforts to cultivate and solicit gifts in support of the School’s mission as well as share in central Development efforts on behalf of the University
  • Strengthen working relationships with the business community in Boston and beyond and
  • Engage alumni as advocates for the School and as partners in providing experiential learning opportunities for students.

Lead with vision

  • Encourage the exploration of new programs to meet changing demand, including innovative new sources of revenue, and enhance enrollment;
  • Enhance academic excellence by supporting research productivity and effective pedagogy;
  • Anticipate trends and seize opportunities to keep Sawyer at the forefront of business education; and
  • Foster collaboration with the other schools in the University to develop new programs that increase enrollment, enhance the University’s reputation for innovative and experiential education, and improve fundraising and grant opportunities.

Build organizational capacity

  • Foster a culture of diversity, equity, and inclusive excellence;
  • Recruit, develop, and retain talented faculty and staff;
  • Cultivate a positive culture within the school to enhance the learning environment and satisfaction levels for students and the working environment for faculty and staff; and
  • Manage the School’s resources to align investments and expenditures with the strategic priorities of the University and the School.

Candidate Profile

We are seeking an energetic, entrepreneurial, and creative leader with a clear understanding of the challenges facing business education in Boston, the United States, and the global online market, with proven management skills and a record of success in academic administration or business.

The ideal candidate will be an effective and collaborative leader with excellent communication skills and will have a history of building partnership and consensus with a variety of stakeholders. While no one candidate will embody all the traits noted below, the successful candidate will bring many of the following professional and personal qualities to this important role:

  • Integrity and transparency in decision-making;
  • Demonstrated capacity to lead, with the globally-aware vision to articulate a clear identity and strategy for competitive success;
  • An approach to leadership that can inspire faculty, students, and staff, and foster pride in and commitment to the School’s vision;
  • Demonstrated ability or potential to lead and contribute to fundraising development efforts, secure corporate partnerships, and cultivate donors;
  • Track record of successful leadership in higher education or a demonstrated interest in the issues facing higher education;
  • Record of scholarly and/or research accomplishment and quality teaching experience or a demonstrated commitment to and understanding of scholarship and teaching;
  • Proven management and financial skills with a record of success in academic administration or business; 
  • Experience as a strategic and collaborative leader with a demonstrated ability to bring constituencies together around a common goal;
  • Demonstrated commitment to diversity and demonstrated success in working within diverse communities; and
  • Ability to build relationships to advance opportunities for students and alumni and to address challenges facing the business community, especially in Boston.


Inquiries, nominations, and expressions of interested should be sent to:


Suffolk University does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national origin, religion, sex, age, disability, sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression, genetic information, Vietnam-era or disabled-veteran status in its employment, admission policies, or in the administration or operation of, or access to its academic and non-academic programs and policies.