Ray Offenheiser to join Notre Dame faculty as Distinguished Professor of the Practice in the Keough School of Global Affairs

by Joan Fallon

Ray Offenheiser

Ray Offenheiser, a widely known nonprofit leader and innovator with a broad range of international development experience in Asia, Africa and Latin America, will join the University of Notre Dame faculty as Distinguished Professor of the Practice and as the inaugural director of the Notre Dame Initiative for Global Development (NDIGD) in the new Donald R. Keough School of Global Affairs.

Offenheiser has served as CEO and president of Oxfam America for the past 20 years. Under his leadership, Oxfam America has grown eightfold and has positioned itself as an influential voice on international development, human rights and governance, humanitarianism and foreign assistance.

“Ray Offenheiser’s appointment is a game-changer for the Keough School and Notre Dame,” said Scott Appleby, Marilyn Keough Dean of the Keough School. “He brings to students, faculty and partners more than 35 years of experience working with major foundations, nonprofits, government, the private sector and the media on a wide range of public policy issues.

“He has worked at the local, national and global levels with some of the world’s most pioneering individuals, organizations and policy initiatives. He has the respect of and access to presidents, prime ministers and parliaments seeking to address complex problems with solutions that are cost-effective, human-centered and scalable.”

Prior to joining Oxfam, Offenheiser represented the Ford Foundation in Bangladesh and the Andean and Southern Cone regions of South America. He has directed programs for the Inter-American Foundation in Brazil and Colombia, and he has worked for Save the Children Federation in Mexico.

Offenheiser served on the Leadership Council of the New Alliance for Food Security and Nutrition in Africa. He also has served as honorary president of Wetlands International, and he was a co-founder of the ONE Campaign, the Modernizing Foreign Assistance Network and the Food Policy Action Network. He has served on the advisory boards of the World Economic Forum, the Council on Foreign Relations, the Aspen Institute, the World Agricultural Forum, the Gates Foundation, Harvard Business School, the Kennedy School of Government at Harvard and Cornell University.

A 1971 graduate of Notre Dame, Offenheiser also holds a master’s degree in development sociology from Cornell University. He is a longstanding member of the Advisory Board of the Kellogg Institute for International Studies. Offenheiser has been a frequent commentator with U.S. and international media.

The Notre Dame Initiative for Global Development — an integral part of the new Keough School of Global Affairs — promotes human development and dignity among people worldwide through applied innovations, impact evaluation, education and training that help build just and equitable societies. Michael Sweikar serves and will continue to serve as managing director of NDIGD.

The Keough School of Global Affairs — founded in 2014 as Notre Dame’s first new degree-granting school or college in nearly 100 years — will prepare new generations of students for skilled, effective and ethical global professional leadership.

Offenheiser will join the faculty in August, just as the Keough School prepares to welcome its first cohort of students in the new Master of Global Affairs. He will teach graduate and undergraduate students and will serve on the Keough School’s Leadership Council.

Contact: Joan Fallon, director of communications, Keough School of Global Affairs, jfallon2@nd.edu