Dana Born Photo
Lecturer in Public Policy
Co-Director, Center for Public Leadership
79 John F. Kennedy St. Taubman Bldg 156
Assistant: Ashley Davis

Dana H. Born (Co-Director, Center for Public Leadership (CPL); Faculty Chair, Senior Executive Fellows (SEF) Program; Lecturer in Public Policy, Harvard Kennedy School of Government) is a retired Brigadier General with 30 years of service in the United States Air Force. Prior to coming to Harvard, from 2004-2013, she served two terms as the Presidentially appointed Dean of the Faculty at the United States Air Force Academy where she was also the Professor and Head of the Behavioral Sciences and Leadership Department. Previously, Dana served as an Exchange Officer with the Royal Australian Air Force, Assistant Director for Recruiting Research and Analysis for the Assistant Secretary of Defense (Force Management Policy), Deputy Chief of the Personnel Issues Team for the Department of the Air Force (DC/Staff Personnel), Aide and Speech Writer to the Secretary of the Air Force, Squadron Commander for 11th Mission Support Squadron at Bolling AFB, DC and in Afghanistan in support of Operation Enduring Freedom.

A graduate with distinction of the United States Air Force Academy, Professor Born received her B.S. in Behavioral Sciences (1983), M.S. in Experimental Psychology from Trinity University, TX (1985), M.A. in Research Psychology from University of Melbourne (1991) and Doctorate in Industrial and Organizational Psychology from Penn State University (1994). She received Penn State University’s Alumni Fellow Award (2012) and Distinguished Alumni Award (2018) and was honored with an Honorary Doctorate from Simmons College in Humane Administration (2007).

Born has been the recipient of a number of senior level military awards including the Secretary of the Air Force’s Eugene M. Zuckert Award for Outstanding Management Achievement, Air Force Association’s Hoyt S. Vandenberg Award for outstanding contributions to Aerospace education, Air Force Distinguished Service Medal, Legion of Merit, Defense Meritorious Service Medal and Active Duty Service Women Veterans Award. She has been honored with the Harvard Kennedy School (HKS) Teaching Awards 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017 and 2018 as well as the Harvard Kennedy School of Government Innovation in Teaching Award in 2017.

Dr. Born is a Governing Trustee, United States Air Force Academy’s Falcon Foundation – serving on the Strategy, Governance and Scholarship Committees; Past President, Massachusetts Women’s Forum; Member, Council on Foreign Relations; Senior Consultant, Core Leadership Institute; Peer Evaluator, Higher Learning Commission; Member, Women Corporate Directors and the International Women’s Forum; Council Member, Boston Mayor’s Pay Equity Workforce; Advisory Board Member, “With Honor;” Advisory Board Member, “A Child’s Guide to War” documentary, Senior Officer, Mission: Readiness; Advisory Board Member, “Blue Star Families;” Past-President, American Psychological Association (Society for Military Psychology) and previous Independent Director on Board of the Apollo Education Group having served on Compensation, Audit and Special Litigation Committees.

Executive Education Programs

Transparent Engagement

Harvard Kennedy School is proud of its energetic involvement in the world. To better understand how to solve public problems by improving policy and leadership, we engage directly with policymakers, public leaders, governments, nonprofit organizations, and for-profit businesses whose activities affect those problems. However, we recognize that such engagement can raise questions about perceived and potential conflicts of interest, so we disclose publicly the key professional activities of our faculty outside the Kennedy School.

Outside Professional Activities For Dana Born



  • Past President, Massachusetts Women’s Forum (MWF) [2018-present; Unpaid]
  • Peer Reviewer, North Central Association, Higher Learning Commission [2010 - present; Paid]
  • Senior Consultant for the Core Leadership Institute (CLI), was Authentic Leadership Institute (ALI) [2014 - present; Paid]
  • Senior Officer supporting Mission:Readiness [2016-present; Unpaid]
  • Advisory Committee, Child’s Guide to War Documentary [2015-present; Unpaid]
  • Advisory Board, With Honor [2017-Present;Unpaid]
  • DeVry University Board [2019-Present; Paid] TBC
  • Journal of Character and Leadership (JCLD), Editorial Board [2018-Present; Unpaid]


  • Women Corporate Directors (WCD)
  • Member, Boston Mayor’s Women’s Workforce Council (WWC) [2016-present; Unpaid]
  • United States Air Force Academy Falcon Foundation Trustee [2013-present; Unpaid]
    - Strategy and Governance Committee Member
    - Scholarship Committee Member
  • United States Air Force Academy Endowment Board of Directors [2019-present; unpaid]
  • Past, Air Force Association (AFA)
  • Society for Industrial/Organizational Psychology (SIOP)
  • Peer Reviewer, Journal of Military Psychology International Women’s Forum (IWF) (May 2011/Jul 2013) [CO/MA; Unpaid]
  • Daughters of the American Revolution (DAR)
  • Admissions Committee (MPP), Harvard Kennedy School of Government
  • George Fellowship Selection Committee, Harvard Kennedy School of Government [2014-2018]
  • Black Family Fellowship Selection Committee, [2019-present]
  • Trustee Blue Star Families [2018-Present; Unpaid]
  • Council on Foreign Relations (CFR) [2017-Present; Unpaid]
  • International Women's Forum (IWF) [2011-Present; Unpaid]
  • Boston Globe contributor, OP EDs [2018-Present; Unpaid/Paid]
  • Penn State University's President's Council [2018-Present; Unpaid]

Recent Speaking Engagements:

  • Center for Asia Leadership [2018; Paid] 
  • Dutch Ministry [2016; 2018; Paid]
  • Southwire [2018; Paid]
  • MIT Lincoln Labs - Invited Senior Leadership Luncheon Seminar: A Conversation on Leader(ship) in the 21st Century [2017; 2018; Paid]
  • Harvard Summit on Excellence and Academic Inclusion in Higher Education - THE DEAN: Attention in the area! Including stories. [2017; Unpaid]
  • Bump Williams Consulting - Leader(ship): Who and Why Are You? [2017; Paid]
  • Australian and New Zealand School of Government (ANZSOG) [2017; 2018 Paid]
  • Pharamavite, LLC - Leader(ship): Who and Why Are You? [2017; 2018; Paid]
  • American Bankers Association - Who and Why Are You? [2017; Paid]
  • Service Academies Global Summit (SAGS) - Moderator [2017; 2018 Unpaid]
  • National Association of Chain Drug Stores (NACDS) - Leader(ship): Who and Why Are You? [2017; Paid]
  • Authentic Leadership Institute [ALI 2017, 2018; Paid]
  • Bahrain [2016; 2017; 2018; 2019 Paid]

Past Member:

  • Past Independent Director, Apollo Education Group (AEG) [2014-2017; Paid]  
  • Past-President, APA - Division 19, Military Psychology
  • Joint Market Analysis and Research Committee, Sponsor
  • American Psychological Society (APS)
  • National Council on Measurement in Education (ACME)
  • Organizational Behavior Teaching Society (OBTC)
  • Air Force Association




Phone: 617-495-8810
Office: 79 John F. Kennedy St. Taubman Bldg 156
Assistant: Ashley Davis


Business & Regulation
Decision Making & Negotiation
Development & Economic Growth
Education, Training & Labor
Environment & Energy
Gender, Race & Identity
Human Rights & Justice
International Relations & Security
Public Leadership & Management
Social Policy

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Mailing Address

Harvard Kennedy School
79 John F. Kennedy St.
Cambridge, MA 02138