New Brandeis president discusses Brandeis' commitment to Jewish values and free speech on campus
By Penny Schwartz
BOSTON (JTA) — After 32 years at Middlebury College, the last 11 as its president, Ron Liebowitz is calling Brandeis University his new academic home.
On July 1, the 59-year-old New York native took the reins as the ninth president of Brandeis, a Jewish-sponsored, nonsectarian research university in suburban Boston with an enrollment of 3,600 undergraduates and more than 2,000 graduate students. Liebowitz was appointed to the position last December.
“Yeah, I’m nervous in some ways,” Liebowitz acknowledged with a chuckle.
But any new-job jitters are tempered by decades of experience as an acclaimed leader in higher education. A scholar of political geography who specializes in Russia, Liebowitz rose from faculty member to provost at Middlebury before being tapped in 2004 for its highest position. In 2009, Time magazine named him one of the 10 best U.S. college presidents.