Rosanne Somerson

Rosanne Somerson

A designer, professor and academic leader, President Rosanne Somerson has been advancing art and design since she was a student at RISD.  After launching a successful design practice, she returned to the College to teach and founded the Furniture Design Department before serving as Provost and chief academic officer.

As RISD’s 17th president she is committed to expanding inclusion, equity, and access in order to enhance a genuinely rich learning environment that consists of diverse experiences, viewpoints, and talents.

President Somerson also maintains a creative practice, designing and creating furniture for exhibitions and commissions, and frequently speaks and writes about the power of critical thinking and making, underscoring the value of art and design to advancing life in the 21st century.