President Anderson's Biography

Since 2016, Michelle J. Anderson has been the 10th president of Brooklyn College. Under her leadership, the campus established the Brooklyn College Cancer Center, obtained AACSB accreditation for the Murray Koppelman School of Business, initiated the “We Stand Against Hate” program, diversified the faculty and college leadership, opened the Immigrant Student Success Office, launched the Healthcare Career, enriched the LGBTQ+ Resource Center, earned top rankings for the Feirstein Graduate School of Cinema, and opened the state-of-the-art Leonard & Claire Tow Center for the Performing Arts and the Don Buchwald Theater.

As president, Anderson prioritizes mentoring across the campus. She launched the Tow Mentoring Initiative, which allows students to engage in transformative research opportunities with faculty mentors, and which has become a signature campus program. At the same time, under her leadership, the campus Alumni Engagement and Magner Career Center offices have coordinated efforts to develop alumni mentors to help students enter the work world.

Anderson has stewarded Brooklyn College through the COVID-19 pandemic, working hard to protect the health and safety of the community. In development, she focused on student support, raising funds for emergency grants, completion grants, internship stipends, mental health resources, the food pantry, and other critical student services.

Anderson has led Brooklyn College through a time of excellent recognition, including:

  • U.S. News & World Report: #1 “Most Ethnically Diverse College” in the region; 6th “Best for Social Mobility” in the nation, 15th “Best Public Regional University,” and 33rd “Best College for Veterans” in the north.
  • Princeton Review: “Best Value College;” “Environmentally Responsible College.”
  • Brookings Institute: 9th “Best College for Economic Mobility” in the nation.
  • Business Insider: 11th “Best College for Return on Investment” in the nation.

Anderson holds a bachelor’s degree from the University of California, Santa Cruz, where she earned the Chancellor’s Award for outstanding academic achievement. She earned a J.D. from Yale Law School, where she was notes editor of the Yale Law Journal. Following law school, she clerked on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit for Judge William A. Norris. Anderson has been dean of the CUNY School of Law, professor at Villanova University School of Law, and a visiting professor at Georgetown University Law Center and Yale Law School.

Anderson is a leading scholar on the law of rape and sexual assault. She is the recipient of numerous honors, including the New York City Bar Association’s Diversity and Inclusion Champion Award. She has also been honored by the Feminist Press with the Susan Rosenberg Zalk Award and by the Center for Women in Government and Civil Society with a Public Service Leadership Award. In 2017, Brooklyn Legal Services gave her a Champion of Justice Award.

Brooklyn. All in.