Ronald A. Petti will take over as Director of Human Resources for Harvard beginning August 4, according to Robert Scott, vice president for administration. Petti will replace Daniel Cantor, who retired as Director of Personnel on June 30.
"I think he's a wonderful person," said Scott. "It's great that a person of his strength, background and ability has agreed to come here."
In his new post--which received a name change, from Director of Personnel to Director of Human Resources--Petti will be responsible for all central management planning, Scott said. Petti will be in charge of working with departments to develop goals and implement them, and will direct hiring, promotion, development planning and compensation planning, Scott added.
Petti's arrival in Cambridge will be homecoming of sorts; he received degrees from both Harvard Law School and Harvard Business School. His career in various human resources posts has taken him from a 19-year stint with the Inland Steel Company--where he was responsible for 24,000 employees--to the $6 billion corporation Alcan Aluminum, and now to Harvard.
The position's name change is intended to emphasize the University's commitment to "provide the best possible work environment for Harvard staff," a University press release reads.
Petti said in the release, "I have a great deal to learn about Harvard and its particular human resources challenges. I am looking forward to working with the departments and the Central Administration to establish our human resource goals for the next five to 10 years and then to achieving those goals."