President at Rhode Island School of Design
Long known as a leader in the studio furniture field, Rosanne Somerson has also earned a growing reputation as an agile, adept and visionary leader in art and design education. She has worked with faculty to articulate and revitalize an academic vision for RISD since 2011, when she became interim provost, followed by a permanent appointment in 2012. In December 2013, RISD’s Board of Trustees tapped the well-respected designer and educator to lead the college as interim president, a position she assumed on January 1, 2014. After conducting an extensive international search, the Board appointed her RISD’s 17th president on February 18, 2015.
An eloquent writer, thought leader and presenter, Somerson is frequently invited to speak at museums, conferences, corporations and colleges around the world. She has served on numerous panels and juries, and appeared in several television segments and videos, including an interview with her in the Smithsonian’s Archives of American Art. Throughout her careers, she has earned recognition for her work as a designer, artist and teacher, including two fellowships from the National Endowment for the Arts and the James Renwick Alliance’s Distinguished Crafts Educator Award.
For full bio, go to: http://president.risd.edu/bio