Woodrow Wilson School Dean Christina Paxson, in 2009. (Photo: Larry Levanti/Courtesy Woodrow Wilson School)
Economist Christina Paxson, dean of the Woodrow Wilson School, will become the president of Brown University in July. She succeeds Ruth Simmons, who was an administrator at Princeton for a decade.
“The search committee at Brown University has made a truly inspired choice for its 19th president, although it means that Princeton will lose one of its most distinguished faculty members and effective academic administrators,” President Tilghman said.
Dean since 2009, Paxson has led the Wilson School though a period of significant change. Selective admission to the school will end next year as major changes in the undergraduate curriculum take effect.
Paxson, a professor of economics and public affairs at the University for 26 years, said she was grateful for “incredible opportunities to develop as a teacher, scholar, and administrator.” Her recent research has focused on economic status and health outcomes over the life course, especially on the health and welfare of children. In 2000 she founded the Center for Health and Wellbeing, a research center in the Wilson School.
“I am drawn to Brown’s distinctive approach to education and scholarship, with its emphasis on intellectual independence and free inquiry,” she said.

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A moment with Dean Christina Paxson (Sept. 23, 2009, issue)