NAFSA Welcomes New Executive Director and CEO

Dr. Esther BrimmerNAFSA this month welcomes a new executive director and CEO—Esther Brimmer, DPhil—a foreign policy expert and academic. She succeeds Marlene Johnson, who served as NAFSA executive director and CEO from 1998 until her retirement in December 2016.

Brimmer’s distinguished career includes three appointments within the U.S. Department of State, serving most recently as the assistant secretary for international organization affairs from April 2009 to 2013. She was a professor of practice of international affairs at The George Washington University, served as an adjunct senior fellow for international institutions at the Council on Foreign Relations, and was a senior adviser at McLarty Associates.

She was previously deputy director and director of research at the Center for Transatlantic Relations at the Johns Hopkins University’s Paul H. Nitze School of Advanced International Studies (SAIS) from 2001 to 2009, and was a member of the SAIS faculty. She also taught at the College of Europe in Belgium, and from 1995 to 1999, she was a senior associate at the Carnegie Commission on Preventing Deadly Conflict. Earlier, she served on Capitol Hill as a legislative analyst for the Democratic Study Group in the U.S. House of Representatives. Immediately after earning her doctorate from Oxford University, she spent two years as a management consultant with McKinsey & Company.

“I am deeply honored to be selected by the Board to be the next executive director and CEO of NAFSA: Association of International Educators,” said Brimmer. “I look forward to working with the membership and the staff to continue NAFSA’s long and distinguished history of advancing the exchange of students, scholars, and ideas.”