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UVA’s Darden School of Business Dean to Return to Faculty at Second Term’s End

bob brunerDean Robert Bruner of the University of Virginia’s Darden School of Business intends to return to a faculty position when he completes his second term as dean in 2015, the school announced this week. In his almost decade as dean, Bruner is credited with having a transformational impact and helping to significantly propel Darden’s reputation globally.

“Darden is recognized worldwide for student satisfaction and for delivering the best graduate business education experience,” UVA President Teresa A. Sullivan said in a statement. “Bob and his team have achieved this reputation through curricular innovations, the launch of two new formats of the Darden MBA, an unrelenting search for top faculty and student talent, and attention to every detail of the academic experience,” she continued.

Bruner, the Charles C. Abbott Professor of Business Administration, has been a Darden faculty member since 1982 and has won numerous teaching awards during his tenure. He is the school’s eighth dean and one of its longest serving. As dean he has helped Darden advance in the areas of technology, diversity, globalization and entrepreneurship and innovation – including leading the launch of the MBA for Executives, made up of monthly residences and distance learning, and the Global MBA for Executives, which combines six, two-week residencies in Brazil, China, India, Europe and the United States.

Bruner has also set himself apart among business school deans as a social media pioneer, penning his own blog since 2006 and tweeting regularly. He has helped the school embrace technology as well, including through a 2009 collaboration with Amazon to pilot e-readers in the classroom and the 2013 debut of several massive open online courses (MOOCs) on the Coursera platform, for which more than half a million people have registered.

Bruner and his team have also raised $150 million for Darden as part of the Campaign for the University of Virginia, funds which have helped established several new research centers including the Darden Center for Asset Management and the Darden Institute for Business in Society. Under his leadership, financial aid for students has also increased, the Class of 2015 boasts record-breaking GMAT scores and grade point averages and unprecedented diversity, and career placements are near the all-time high.

“We’re on a mission at the Darden School,” Bruner said in a statement announcing his plans to step down as dean. “Each day, our global community pulls together to improve the world by developing responsible leaders and advancing knowledge. Leading this mission over the past nine years and in the year ahead has been, and is, a privilege.”

When his second term as dean comes to an end in July 2015, Bruner will return to the faculty and take a traditional one-year sabbatical. He looks forward to returning his focus to teaching, research and writing.

Executive Vice President and Provost John Simon announced that Darden Professor of Business Administration Ken Eades will chair of the committee charged with conducting a global search for Bruner’s successor.

Read more about Darden Dean Bob Bruner’s plans to return to teaching.