University Names Goldman Sachs Executive to New VP Post

The University this morning announced the creation of a new position, executive vice president, and the name of the person appointed to the job: Edward C. Forst ’82...

The University this morning announced the creation of a new position, executive vice president, and the name of the person appointed to the job: Edward C. Forst ’82, currently global head of the investment management division for Goldman, Sachs & Co. and a member of the firm's management committee.

Harvard's decentralized structure means the president and provost have a large number of direct reports: the deans of 11 individual faculties, plus seven vice presidents for the functions of central administration. The new post will reduce this burden. Three University vice presidents will report directly to Forst: Sally Zeckhauser, vice president for administration; vice president for finance, a vacant post being filled on an acting basis by Daniel Shore; and Marilyn Hausammann, vice president for human resources. The University's chief information officer, Daniel Moriarty, will report to Forst with reference to administrative technology, but will continue to report to the provost on the academic side of his duties.

As "the principal ranking operating officer at the University," Forst, who joins Harvard on September 1, will also serve as "senior adviser to the president" and lead "the development of administrative capacity in new areas that cross school boundaries or traditional administrative units," according to the University news release. And he will serve as a member of the board of the Harvard Management Company, which manages the University's endowment.

President Drew Faust said Forst brings to the job "deep experience with a large, complex, and global organization, a proven track record in managing the functions that will be central to his new role, and an outstanding reputation for his collegial and effective leadership style."

Forst was elected a partner at Goldman Sachs in 1998 and has held several senior roles with the company. The Harvard news release quoted him as saying, "The decision to leave Goldman Sachs was an extremely difficult one. ...The rare opportunity to work with the outstanding scholars, educators, students, and professionals at Harvard was compelling. I care deeply about the University's mission and that commitment has only grown since my first day as a student."

Forst served as co-chair of the reunion gift committee for his twentieth and twenty-fifth Harvard reunions, and as vice chair for his fifteenth reunion. Since 2005, he has co-chaired the University Committee on Student Excellence and Opportunity, which engages with all Harvard schools to determine the most effective ways to attract top students and reduce financial barriers to their enrollment.

He also holds an M.B.A. degree from the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania.

Read the official announcement in the University Gazette.

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