President Bollinger Names Suzanne B. Goldberg as Columbia’s First Executive Vice President for University Life

January 21, 2015

Law professor, a gender law expert, served as University President’s Special Advisor on Sexual Assault Prevention and Response

January 21, 2015 – Columbia University President Lee C. Bollinger has appointed Suzanne B. Goldberg, the Herbert and Doris Wechsler Clinical Professor of Law, to the new position of Executive Vice President for University Life. Goldberg, who joined the faculty in 2006, is also a founder and director of Columbia Law School's Center for Gender and Sexuality Law. Since July 2014, she has been serving as President Bollinger’s Special Advisor on Sexual Assault Prevention and Response.

“Suzanne Goldberg’s career of public advocacy, scholarship and teaching reflects a distinctive talent for honoring diverse points of view and replacing conflict with social progress,” said Bollinger. “She possesses the demonstrated ability to thoughtfully and sensitively engage virtually every member of the University in service of improving our ability to respond to complex issues. Suzanne is clearly the right person to give shape to this new office, and I think I speak for all who know her when I express my gratitude for her willingness to take on this important responsibility.”

The mission of the new Office of Executive Vice President for University Life will be to further the academic and community experience of students, faculty and staff at Columbia. Professor Goldberg will work with all members of the campus community to create and enhance connections between the classroom and the broader intellectual life of the University. The Office of University Life will serve as a primary place of engagement for issues of campus-wide concern and, importantly, as a focal point for student interests, supplementing the current resources within Columbia's undergraduate, graduate and professional schools.

“This is a wonderful opportunity for a University-wide office to focus on strengthening and enriching the intellectual exchange, student leadership, and community citizenship that are Columbia's cornerstones,” said Goldberg. “I have been deeply impressed by the commitment to respect, inclusion, and ethical leadership among students, faculty colleagues and administrators throughout the University community I have worked with during my time as Special Advisor and I look forward to continuing and broadening these collaborations.”

Professor Goldberg is a nationally recognized expert on the subject of gender and sexuality law. For many years, she has been a leading advocate for the rights of LGBT individuals. She represented the men prosecuted under a sodomy law struck down as unconstitutional in the Supreme Court's landmark 2003 decision in Lawrence v. Texas and has been a leader in the national conversation about marriage equality. In addition to her work as a legal advocate and public commentator, she has published extensive scholarly work addressing procedural and substantive barriers to equality. In 2009, she received the Columbia Law School Willis L. M. Reese Award for Excellence in Teaching. In recent months as Special Advisor to President Bollinger, she has played a key role in strengthening the University's gender-based misconduct policy, developing a groundbreaking prevention training protocol capable of being customized for the broad variety of students at Columbia.

Goldberg completed her J.D. cum laude at Harvard Law School in 1990. After receiving her Bachelor of Arts at Brown University magna cum laude in 1985, she was a Fulbright Fellow at the National University of Singapore from 1985 to 1986.

About Columbia University
Among the world’s leading research universities, Columbia University in the City of New York continuously seeks to advance the frontiers of scholarship and foster a campus community deeply engaged in the complex issues of our time through teaching, research, patient care and public service. The University is comprised of 16 undergraduate, graduate and professional schools, and four affiliated colleges and seminaries in Manhattan, and a wide array of research institutes and global centers around the world. More than 40,000 students, award-winning faculty and professional staff define the University’s underlying values and commitment to pursuing new knowledge and educating informed, engaged citizens. Founded in 1754 as King’s College, Columbia is the fifth oldest institution of higher learning in the United States.