In The News Hartwick College Names Darren Reisberg as President-Elect

April 19, 2022

The Board of Trustees of Hartwick College announced today that it has selected Darren Reisberg, executive vice president and chief strategy officer at the Joyce Foundation, as the college’s 11th president. He will take office on August 1, 2022.


“President-elect Reisberg is the best choice to lead Hartwick at this critical point in the College’s 225-year history,” said David H. Long, chair of the Hartwick College Board of Trustees. “Building upon the outstanding foundation that Margaret L. Drugovich has established during her 14-year tenure as Hartwick’s president, we believe the College’s innovative FlightPath approach to education provides a compelling and distinctive vision for its future. As the next president of Hartwick, Darren Reisberg will be charged with continuing that trajectory while navigating the complexity of leading a nationally ranked college.”



The board’s selection is the result of a comprehensive search by the 11-member Presidential Search Committee led by chair Kathleen Fallon ’88, vice-chair of the Hartwick College Board of Trustees, and assisted by Academic Search.


“I am deeply committed to the uniquely personalized and supportive liberal arts education and career development opportunities Hartwick College offers its dedicated and dynamic student body,” Reisberg said. “Hartwick continues to prepare our next generation of leaders and heroes and—in partnership with faculty, students, staff, the Board, alumni and the greater Oneonta community—I am honored, humbled and ever-ready to lead Hartwick in the next phase of its storied journey.”


President-elect Reisberg currently serves as executive vice president and chief strategy officer at the Joyce Foundation, a private foundation based in Chicago, which invests in policies to advance racial equity and economic mobility for the next generation in the Great Lakes region. 


Before joining the foundation, he was the vice president for strategic initiatives and deputy provost at the University of Chicago, where he managed the Office of the Provost’s operations, administered the faculty governance system, and drove strategic planning and fundraising efforts. He also led the coordination of the university’s K-12 education initiatives, including the Urban Education Institute, and oversaw various units, such as the Mansueto Institute for Urban Innovation and the Smart Museum of Art.


In other roles at the University of Chicago, President-elect Reisberg served as the vice president and secretary of the university, a position in which he was the primary administrative liaison to the university’s board of trustees. In this role, he developed and supported governance practices for the University of Chicago Medical Center. He also was the first executive director of the University of Chicago’s Institute of Politics, which is designed to foster in undergraduate students a passion for public service, meaningful dialogue and active engagement in the democratic process.


Since 2019, the president-elect has served as the governor-appointed chair of the Illinois State Board of Education, which oversees K-12 programming in over 850 school districts.


After clerking for the Honorable Rebecca R. Pallmeyer of the United States District Court in Illinois, Reisberg practiced law at the Chicago firm of Sidley Austin LLP, where he served as lead or co-counsel for multiple arbitrations, lawsuits and mediations in federal and state courts, and the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission.


He received a B.A. in political science from Duke University and a J.D. degree from Yale Law School. He also completed several political science and art history courses at the Institute Internacional in Madrid, Spain.


Reisberg’s broad array of civic leadership and involvement includes serving as commissioner for the Illinois Holocaust and Genocide Commission, which provides guidance and education on genocide education and the promotion of human rights. Illinois Governor J.B. Pritzker appointed him to serve as chair of the Affirming and Inclusive Task Force, which makes recommendations about strategies and best practices for ensuring safe and inclusive school environments for transgender, nonbinary and gender-nonconforming students. Additionally, Reisberg recently concluded nine years of service on the board of directors of the Center on Halsted, a lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender community center in Chicago.


Born in New York and raised in Northern New Jersey, Reisberg will return east with his husband, John Hilliard, and their three dogs—Bowie, Skylar and Cornelia.


Reisberg succeeds Margaret L. Drugovich, who is retiring at the end of July. Drugovich has been Hartwick College’s president since 2008 and under her leadership, the College has seen a range of future-focused innovations such as the launch of its three-year degree option, the implementation of its innovative and personalized FlightPath experience, and the development of the Griffiths Center for Collaboration & Innovation, the Clark Simulation Nursing Laboratory, and the Center for Craft Food and Beverage. She has also led strategic investment efforts resulting in record growth in financial contributions from alumni and philanthropic donors. Under Drugovich’s guidance, Hartwick has invested $45 million in campus improvements.