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Kirsten Khire

Kirsten Khire, APR, M.A., will join the Duke University Sanford School of Public Policy on Aug. 12 as associate dean of communications and marketing, Dean Judith Kelley announced today.

Judith Kelley, Dean of the Sanford School, said, “The Sanford School and Duke University are so fortunate to have Kirsten join us. Her rich experiences from around the world, combined with her results-oriented mindset, will be a terrific addition to our already strong communications and events team. I am excited about working together to broadcast the stories and impacts of the Sanford School and to reach new heights together.”

The search committee was chaired by Sanford School leaders Josh Bond, Associate Dean for Development and Alumni Relations, and David Arrington, Associate Dean for Finance and Administration. Arrington noted, “I and other members of the committee were deeply impressed by Kirsten's analytical and strategic thinking abilities, her solid collaboration and networking experiences, and her demonstrated strengths in program marketing. We look forward to working with her to enhance Sanford’s communications in support of our institutional priorities.”

Khire brings almost 20 years of communications management and leadership experience to the Sanford School. She has significant experience in management, internal communications, external communications, media relations, marketing, and event planning, with many accomplishments in brand building, fundraising communications, student recruitment and donor relations.

Most recently, Khire has served as executive director of external relations of the Belk College of Business at UNC Charlotte since 2014. In this role, she led award-winning and outcomes-focused communications for North Carolina’s urban research business school. Prior to her leadership role in the UNC Charlotte Belk College of Business, Kirsten was Head of Communications for the research organization Bioversity International, based in Rome, Italy. She also served for 10 years at Michigan State University as Director of Communications for the College of Communication Arts & Sciences and Director of Communications for the National Food Safety & Toxicology Center.

Michael Schoenfeld, Duke Vice President, Public Affairs and Government Relations, said, “I am delighted to welcome Kirsten to the Sanford School’s great communications team and the broader network at Duke. Her experience leading communications and marketing at a dynamic and ambitious university will help us further raise the visibility of Sanford’s people and programs.”

“I’m thrilled to join the leadership team of the Sanford School of Public Policy, in its role as a leading source of innovative policy solutions to create positive change. The stellar faculty, staff, students and alumni are making a difference in many areas of public policy – and contributing to some of the most pressing issues in our world,” Khire said. “I’m excited to work with the team to elevate the experts, initiatives and impacts of this leading public policy school with a focus on organizational objectives and outcomes.”

Khire holds bachelor's degrees in Journalism and Spanish from the University of Wisconsin-Madison and a master's degree in Technology and Communication (Digital Communication) from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. She is Accredited in Public Relations (APR) by the Public Relations Society of America (PRSA) and has served on the boards of PRSA Charlotte and the PRSA Southeast District. Khire has extensive international work experience and is passionate about diversity, travel and lifelong learning.