Appointment of New Chancellor for Rutgers–New Brunswick

Members of the Rutgers Community:

I am happy to announce that I informed the Rutgers Board of Governors today that Debasish “Deba” Dutta, currently Provost and Executive Vice President for Academic Affairs and Diversity at Purdue University, has been appointed as the next Chancellor for Rutgers University–New Brunswick, effective July 1.

Dr. Dutta comes to Rutgers with impeccable academic credentials, solid, proven administrative leadership, and deep experience at three Big Ten institutions, which will serve him well as he oversees our flagship and its more than 50,000 students and 4,000 faculty.  

In three years as Provost at Purdue, he has helped the university improve its four-year graduation rate, enhance student advising, recruit the most diverse and academically strong first-year class in its history, and dramatically increase the number of new faculty of color. Dr. Dutta helped establish programs at Purdue to support faculty and graduate student scholarship in the liberal arts and oversaw the academic expansion of engineering, computer science, business, nursing, and technology. During his tenure, faculty research funding at Purdue reached record levels and patent applications and awards increased significantly.

Previously, Dr. Dutta served as Associate Provost and Dean of the Graduate College at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. Among other achievements at Illinois, he championed an initiative on National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellowships that doubled the number of awards, and helped design a plan to increase student, faculty, and staff diversity. He also spent 20 years on the University of Michigan’s mechanical engineering faculty, where he founded InterPro, an interdisciplinary academic unit to prepare students for leadership in the 21st century technological world.  

Dr. Dutta, who earned his Ph.D. in industrial engineering from Purdue, also served three years at the National Science Foundation as director of the Integrative Graduate Education and Research Traineeship (IGERT) program. He is a fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science and the American Society of Mechanical Engineers, and a scholar-in-residence at the National Academy of Engineering.

Dr. Dutta will be an inspiring, collaborative leader and a powerful voice for Rutgers–New Brunswick at a pivotal time in its history. He has nurtured a rich understanding of the power and value of research. He has a proven track record of success in building diverse, inclusive communities. He is the right leader to build on the great progress that our AAU institution has made in the past five years and take Rutgers–New Brunswick to a new level of excellence.

My thanks to the search committee, co-chaired by Senior Vice President Barbara Lee and Board of Governors member Frank Hundley, for producing an outstanding pool of candidates. Let me also take this opportunity to again thank Chancellor Richard L. Edwards for his leadership, innovation, and vision in guiding Rutgers–New Brunswick through an exciting period of restructuring and growth.

Please join me in welcoming Deba Dutta to the Rutgers community. For more information on his appointment and achievements, read the news release.


Robert Barchi