S. Caroline Kerr ’05 Named Special Advisor to the President

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The former trustee will work on strategic and new initiatives across the institution.

S. Caroline Kerr
(Photo courtesy of S. Caroline Kerr ’05)

Trustee Emerita S. Caroline Kerr ’05, an education leader and strategist with a background in building and advising startups and nonprofits, has been named special advisor to the president for strategic and new initiatives, President Sian Leah Beilock announced today. 

The part-time position, which includes a community relations component, began Sept. 1. 

“Caroline is a bridge-builder with a commitment to Dartmouth who knows how to bring people together to improve their organizations,” President Beilock says. “Her ability to cultivate strong relationships across the institution will help push Dartmouth to new heights.”

“I am excited to be joining President Beilock’s team and energized by her emerging vision for Dartmouth,” says Kerr, who completed her term as trustee in June. “This is an opportunity to leverage my deep experience with Dartmouth and my professional experience strengthening great, mission-driven organizations.”

As special advisor, Kerr will work closely with the president, senior leaders, and teams across campus to develop and implement “special projects that are core to Dartmouth’s success, including engagement with our local community, supporting students as they design their Dartmouth and professional careers, and fueling innovation across the institution,” she says.

Key partners in this work will include the Office of Government and Community Relations, the Transformation Office, the Dean of the College and Division of Student AffairsCampus Services, and others.

Kerr was previously CEO of the Joyce Ivy Foundation, a nonprofit that helps raise the aspirations of talented young women and prepare them for college and leadership, and currently serves on several nonprofit boards, including the Children’s Literacy Foundation.

As a Dartmouth undergraduate, Kerr majored in sociology modified with women’s and gender studies and minored in education and human development, and went on to earn a master’s in higher education from the Harvard Graduate School of Education. While at Harvard, she worked with the Consortium on Financing Higher Education, an organization of highly selective liberal arts colleges and universities committed to financial aid policies that meet students’ full demonstrated need, and received Harvard’s Intellectual Contribution/Faculty Tribute Award. 

A recipient of the Young Alumni Distinguished Service Award and two-time winner of the Jonathan Clarkson Gibbs 1852 Group Leader of the Year Award, Kerr has been actively engaged with Dartmouth throughout her career. She served two terms as president of DGALA, Dartmouth’s LGBTQIA+ alumni association, and was a member of the Alumni Council, Communities Executive Council, Club And Group Officers’ Executive Committee, Class of 2005 Executive Committee, and the Women of Dartmouth launch team. 

Elected to the Board of Trustees in 2015, Kerr—one of the youngest trustees in Dartmouth’s history—served as vice chair of the board, chair of the Committee on Student Experience, and trustee liaison to the advisory boards of the Dartmouth Center for Social Impact, the William Jewett Tucker Center for Spiritual and Ethical Life, and the Nelson A. Rockefeller Center for Public Policy and Social Sciences. 

Kerr lives in Hanover with her wife, Darcy Kerr, Geisel ’10, an associate professor of pathology and laboratory medicine at the Geisel School of Medicine, and their three children. The couple is active in the Upper Valley community via Ford Sayre and Hanover Parks and Recreation youth coaching, the Lake Morey Protective Association, Montshire Museum of Science, Vermont Institute of Natural Science, CHaD HERO, and the Prouty.

Kerr serves on the Bernice A. Ray School PTO Grant Committee and previously served on the boards of StoneLedge Stables and Hampshire Cooperative Nursery School, as well as several working groups on housing, child care, and early childhood education.

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