Sarah Karmon to Serve as Executive Director of the Harvard Alumni Association |

After a seven-month search that enlisted the help of an advisory committee, an outside executive search firm, and nominations from alumni, the Harvard Alumni Association has landed on a new executive director: its deputy executive director.

Sarah C. Karmon, who has served as deputy executive director of the HAA since 2018, will take over as the organization’s permanent leader in January, the University announced Thursday. She will be the first woman to hold the post.

Karmon will succeed Philip W. Lovejoy, who is set to step down from the association’s top post at the end of the calendar year after eight years in the role. As executive director, she will oversee a staff of 40 employees managing alumni events, including reunions and Harvard Club events, for over 40,000 University alumni.

Sarah C. Karmon.

Sarah C. Karmon.

As HAA deputy executive director, Karmon developed hybrid programming during the Covid-19 pandemic and “played a leading role” in the joint Commencement ceremony for the Classes of 2020 and 2021 last May.

Karmon first joined the HAA as its senior director of University-wide affairs in 2016. Before Harvard, Karmon served as special assistant to the presidential search committee that selected University President Lawrence S. Bacow, the chief of staff to University Provost Alan M. Garber ’76, and deputy director of development strategy.

Bacow praised Karmon’s “commitment to Harvard” and “hallmark collegiality.”

“Sarah has been a terrific leader in a time of challenge and change. She has brought together our alumni and created important connections across all parts of the University,” he said.

The search for the HAA executive director enlisted the help of Isaacson, Miller — a prominent executive search firm. The HAA Board of Directors voted to approve Karmon’s appointment hours before the University’s official announcement.

—Staff writer Cara J. Chang can be reached at Follow her on Twitter @CaraChang20.

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