UW-Madison: Diana Harvey named inaugural Vice Chancellor for Strategic Communication

Kelly Tyrrell

MADISON — A Badger parent with more than 20 years of leadership experience at top universities has been appointed to lead the University of Wisconsin–Madison’s marketing and communications efforts, Chancellor Jennifer Mnookin announced today.

Diana Harvey, who currently serves as associate vice chancellor for Communications & Public Affairs at the University of California, Berkeley, will assume the role on Sept. 1.

Originally from Minneapolis, Minnesota, Harvey says her son’s experiences as a UW undergraduate, in part, led her to apply for the role.

“From the first time I set foot on campus in 2013, I have been inspired by the Wisconsin Idea,” Harvey says. “I’m both humbled and delighted to share stories of the many ways the university contributes to the quality of life in Wisconsin, drives the state economy and serves as an engine of social mobility for graduates.”

Harvey says that she witnessed the university’s transformational power by watching her son’s growth from his start as a Witte Hall freshman through his 2017 graduation and on to his successful career in Madison.

“Diana possesses a unique lens, having experienced the best of UW–Madison, while also having enhanced the reputations of several of the best universities in the country,” Mnookin says. “I’m confident and excited that she will further elevate our efforts in these important areas.”

Upon her arrival, Harvey will lead a new division, Strategic Communication, made up of the offices of University Communications and University Marketing, previously within the Office of University Relations.

The area manages a broad range of UW–Madison’s communications, marketing and brand strategy, while also working closely with the university’s schools and colleges and affiliated organizations. Its work is seen daily by media, alumni, parents, businesses, policymakers and the campus community itself.

Under the leadership of Charlie Hoslet, University Relations will continue to oversee the university’s Government Relations and Strategic Partnerships, Industry Engagement and Campus and Visitor Relations areas as a standalone division.

At UC Berkeley, the top-ranked public university in the country, Harvey oversees communications, marketing and government and community relations. Prior to her time there, she served as director of communications, marketing and alumni engagement at Duke University’s Global Health Institute and as Chief Communications Officer and Deputy Chief of Staff to the President at the University of Minnesota.

Harvey says she plans to continue to emphasize the impact and excellence of the university’s teaching, research and outreach. “I strive to demonstrate how university faculty, students and staff are generating new knowledge, translating complex discoveries and serving the community in ways that create a better world,” she says.

She notes that she’ll also bring a strong focus on fostering a sense of inclusion and belonging, while also protecting the right to free expression, having served on Berkeley’s Free Speech Commission in 2017-2018.

“I’m thrilled to help advance Chancellor Mnookin’s priorities, while also supporting my new team and the university’s community of talented communicators,” she adds.

Harvey was chosen following a nationwide search, led by School of Journalism and Mass Communications director and James E. Burgess Chair in Journalism Ethics Katy Culver.

Culver expressed appreciation for the search committee, which screened the strong pool of applicants and recommended finalists to Mnookin.

“It was such a privilege to work with an exceptional set of colleagues from across campus on this all-important search,” Culver says. “Our committee was deeply impressed by Diana’s experience, preparation and ideas. Her enthusiasm and authenticity are going to serve UW–Madison so well.”