Barbara Roberts, the first woman governor of Oregon, has been named the new director of the Kennedy School's state and local executive program, University officials announced yesterday.
Roberts' appointment comes after a year-long search to find a head for the school's state and local executive program, Associate Dean for Teaching Programs Peter B. Zimmerman '68 said yesterday.
"[Roberts] was one of a number of people who we reached out to, who we though might be interested," Zimmerman said. "We thought it was improbable to attract someone of Governor Roberts's stature," he said.
The former governor said her decision was difficult because of ties to Oregon.
"Making the choice to leave Oregon for an extended period was only possible because of the wonderful opportunity Harvard presented," she said.
Roberts, 58, did not seek re-election to a second term as Oregon's governor.
Gov. John Kitzhaber congratulated Roberts on her appointment.
"Clearly, Oregon sets a standard when it comes to innovative approaches to governing--in no small part because of the work Barbara Roberts has put in," Kitzhaber said.
"I'm glad she's going to share the Oregon story of success with the rest of the country," he said.
The Program for Senior Executives in State and Local Government helps develop relationships among public-sector colleagues across the country and stimulates interest in new management ideas and techniques, according to a statement released by the Kennedy School.
A past participant in the program, Roberts will bring years of experience in public service to the Kennedy School.
Prior to her election as governor, Roberts served as Oregon's secretary of state, lieutenant governor and majority leader of the state's House of Representatives.
Roberts' term as governor ended this year when she declined to run for a second term, Zimmerman said.
In a statement released yesterday, Dean of the Kennedy School Albert Carnesale praised Roberts' qualifications.
"it is our great fortune that Barbara Roberts has accepted our invi-
Roberts, a fourth-generation descendant ofOregon Trail pioneers, said leaving her home statewas a difficult decision.
Roberts succeeds Elizabeth C Nill, who left thepost to become the Kennedy School's Director ofExternal Affairs, Zimmerman said.
This story was compiled with AssociatedPress wire dispatches.