Patricia Bellinger to Join Harvard Kennedy School’s Center for Public Leadership as Executive Director

July 29, 2013

Patricia Bellinger, a proven leader in executive development, change management and diversity & inclusion, has been named the new Executive Director at Harvard Kennedy School’s Center for Public Leadership (CPL) as well as an adjunct lecturer at the Kennedy School.

Her appointment was announced today by John Haigh, Executive Dean of HKS.

Bellinger has served for several years as Executive Director of Executive Education at Harvard Business School (HBS), where she managed a $145 million portfolio of programs, consisting of more than 130 open enrollment and custom programs. Executive Education at HBS is conducted not only on its Harvard campus but also at various locations around the world, including China, Europe, India and Latin America. Heading up a team of 140 people, Bellinger also oversaw substantive campus capital improvements, including four major building projects and the implementation of the School’s first global corporate relations strategy for Executive Education.

“It was a difficult decision for me to leave Harvard Business School, but I was inspired by the tremendous opportunities at CPL,” said Bellinger. “This is a critical moment for the Center, as it enters an exciting new phase in its history, and I’m thrilled to be a part of it.”

Bellinger will serve as a co-partner at the Center with faculty directors David Gergen, Public Service Professor of Public Leadership, HKS; and Max Bazerman, Jesse Isidor Straus Professor of Business Administration, HBS.

The Center for Public Leadership is in the midst of a major re-launch at the Kennedy School. Bazerman joined this spring as co-director and is building a major, university-wide research program in behavioral research. In May, the Center held its first gathering with a new Leadership Council whose members have signaled an interest in funding new fellowship programs for students. On July 1, the Hauser Center for Non-Profit Organizations merged into the Center, becoming the Hauser Institute for Civil Society. By joining forces, the two organizations will create a potentially powerful platform for training a steady flow of talented, well-prepared students for leadership in social change as well as greater research in the area.

“We are elated that Patti Bellinger has agreed to become our co-partner at such a significant time in the life of the Center,” said Gergen. “Her leadership capacities – built up over the years in both the corporate and civic sectors – as well as her understanding of what it takes to develop others makes her an ideal choice. We are darn lucky that she is coming aboard.”

Gergen added: “On behalf of our CPL team, I also want to thank Donna Kalikow for her six years of devoted service as Executive Director. She helped to bring us to this moment and we owe her a great measure of gratitude for her contributions.”

“Patti Bellinger,” said Bazerman, “is an inspiring leader who brings passion for leadership, creating a diverse workforce, change management, and the many other activities that are so central to our work at the Center for Public Leadership. I look forward to working with Patti on the many fascinating opportunities that lie ahead at CPL.”

Prior to joining HBS, Bellinger worked in a variety of positions in multiple disciplines, including the arts, the energy sector, global corporations and start-up enterprises. She has extensive experience in leadership development, global diversity, change management and organizational behavior. While based in London between 2000 and 2007, Bellinger served as Group Vice President at British Petroleum (BP). There she oversaw leadership development programs while also establishing and leading BP’s global diversity and inclusion transformation. Under her leadership, the percentage of women executives at BP nearly doubled and the employee inclusion index increased substantially.

A graduate of Harvard College and a resident in Boston with her husband, Dick Balzer, and four children, Bellinger devotes considerable time to the non-profit sector, focusing her efforts on youth development and equitable access to education. Until recently she served as Vice-Chair of the Board of the YMCA of Greater Boston, and she is a member of the Board of Directors of Facing History and Ourselves, the Advisory Board of the Program in Education, Afterschool and Resiliency (PEAR) at McLean Hospital and the Board of Trustees of uAspire.

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Patricia Bellinger, new Executive Director at Harvard Kennedy School’s Center for Public Leadership and adjunct lecturer

Patricia Bellinger, new Executive Director at Harvard Kennedy School’s Center for Public Leadership and adjunct lecturer

"This is a critical moment for the Center, as it enters an exciting new phase in its history, and I’m thrilled to be a part of it," said Bellinger.