Farewell, Dean Brigety

Dean Brigety
Dean Brigety

The Institute for African Studies (IAFS) bids a fond farewell to Ambassador Reuben E. Brigety, Dean of the Elliott School of International Affairs, and champion for Africa and its people.

Ambassador Brigety has been named vice-chancellor and president of the University of the South, Sewanee, a position he will take up this summer.

Ambassador Brigety was the driving force behind the establishment of IAfS, insisting on his first day as Elliott School Dean that knowledge of Africa is essential for anyone working in international affairs. Through his support, energy, and commitment, IAfS has become an important interdisciplinary hub for GW students, faculty, and researchers interested in Africa.  The Elliott School has expanded its course offerings on Africa, and student enrollment in Africa-related classes has more than doubled during his tenure, at both graduate and undergraduate levels. Dean Brigety’s passion for African affairs has inspired countless students to deeper learning and exploration of the continent’s complexities and dynamism.

I am so grateful to Reuben for his leadership, his energy, and his enduring commitment to ensuring that Africa gets the attention it warrants within the study of international policy affairs.

Jennifer G. Cooke

Director, Institute for African Studies

Dean B., as Elliott School students affectionately know him, has meant many things to many people: a source of knowledge and professional inspiration; an approachable and thoughtful mentor, with an ever-ready sense of humor and perspective; a model of ethical and compassionate leadership; and in all things a champion of diversity and inclusion in the study of international affairs.

Dean B., we are sad to see you go, but we are committed to building on your legacy at the Elliott School and are grateful for your energy and vision. We know that the University of the South is gaining a wonderful leader with a powerful record of service—naval officer, diplomat, educator—and many unheralded talents (Salsa anyone?) to boot. We offer you our warmest wishes for every success in your new position.

Even thought he may be leaving us, his leagcy at the Elliott School will long, long remain

Dr. Ilana Feldman

Interim Dean, Elliott School of International Affairs

When I first heard that the Elliott School was having a new dean and that it was the former U.S. Ambassador to the African Union, I knew what my next steps were to be; to apply. I had been following Ambassador Brigety every since he took up post in Addis-Ababa and simply could not believe that he would be the decisive factor in my choosing a graduate trajectory. Throughout my time at the Elliott School, one thing has remained constant, and that is the unequivocal leadership, sense of ethics, and forward lookingness that Dean B. brought to the school.

Siaka Togola

M.A.I.A. Candidate, Program Coordinator, Institute for African Studies

Every issue the world is grappling with right now is in Africa—and in most cases, at a greater amplitude than other parts of the world. This includes economic development, peace and security, humanitarian responses, climate change, empowerment of women, relations with other regions, and the role of multilateral organizations. Anyone studying international affairs must h have, at the least, a reasonable understanding of what is happening on the continent.

Ambassador Reuben E. Brigety

Dean, Elliott School of International Affairs

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