Provost Lerman to Step Down

Dr. Lerman to serve on GW faculty following sabbatical.

Provost Lerman
Provost Steven Lerman
August 30, 2015

Provost Steven Lerman announced Wednesday that he is stepping down as the provost of the George Washington University. In a letter to colleagues Dr. Lerman said, "being part of the leadership team as well as a member of this distinguished faculty, and having the opportunity to work with such talented staff and students, has been an enormous privilege. One of the great joys of my job has been that I have learned something new here every single day."

Dr. Lerman will remain in his role until the end of the calendar year. He will begin a year-long sabbatical at the beginning of 2016 and plans to return to GW as a member of the faculty and the A. James Clark Professor in Civil and Environmental Engineering.

"Steve Lerman has been a terrific partner over the past five years," said President Steven Knapp. "He led us through one of the most significant strategic planning processes in the university's history and oversaw a significant restructuring of student affairs and the GW medical center. To all those efforts he brought a spirit of openness and collaboration that I hope will persist as a permanent feature of the university's culture."

Since becoming provost of the university in July 2010, Dr. Lerman has overseen a number of major initiatives. The centerpiece has been leading the collaborative, university-wide process to develop and implement Vision 2021, a 10-year, transformational strategic plan that was unanimously approved by the Board of Trustees in 2013. 

Dr. Lerman has also presided over the implementation of the strategic plan for athletics and recreation, a major renovation of Gelman Library, the academic transition of the Corcoran School of the Arts and Design, development of programming for the George Washington University Museum and The Textile Museum and academic planning for Science and Engineering Hall. He managed the reorganization of the three schools that formerly constituted the university’s medical center and the integration of the former Division of Student and Academic Support Services into the Office of the Provost, restructuring enrollment management and admissions and bringing under common leadership the university’s academic experience and student life beyond the classroom.  

He also spearheaded the recruitment of new deans of the Schools of Law, Medicine and Health Sciences, Nursing and Business, the Elliott School of International Affairs and the Columbian College of Arts and Sciences, as well as directors of the Corcoran School of the Arts and Design, Graduate School of Political Management and the new museum. He fostered the development of cross-disciplinary research initiatives, expanded undergraduate research opportunities and created senior positions within the Office of the Provost to provide leadership for diversity and inclusion, international strategy, career services, sustainability and online education. Along with the deans, Dr. Lerman has been a key participant in Making History: the Campaign for GW.

Dr. Lerman has also been a tireless ambassador for the university’s Mount Vernon Campus, where he and his wife, Lori Lerman, reside. The university in 2012 opened Ames Hall, a state-of-the-art academic building on the Mount Vernon Campus, and the Lermans have hosted the popular Pancakes with the Provost, a monthly open house for all students across the university, at the home. 

“While I have enjoyed the leadership and organizational challenges of being provost, Lori and I are looking forward to spending some time in California to be closer to our family there and preparing for my return to teaching and research,” said Dr. Lerman.