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Excellence, Integrity + Impact

Higher Education

Insight, Diversity, Leadership

Our Experience

Isaacson, Miller is a trusted name in recruiting the finest talent to institutions in higher education. With more than half our work devoted to university and college leadership, we believe we have the nation’s largest and most diverse practice in higher education, spanning both academic administration and functional leadership positions.


Our Clients

Across thousands of searches, Isaacson, Miller has served nearly every sector of the academy, including the most distinguished public and private research universities and selective liberal arts colleges at the presidential level and critical roles throughout these institutions. The depth of Isaacson, Miller’s higher education practice is reflected in its reach into two- and four-year colleges and universities of all classifications and sizes, urban and rural. The firm is a trusted partner to many of the nation’s Historically Black Colleges and Universities and other minority serving institutions, women’s colleges, and faith-based institutions around the country.


Our Understanding

At this critical inflection point in higher education, Isaacson, Miller has a deep understanding of the increasing complexity of these positions and a profound knowledge of leadership qualities most desired by search committees. The list of challenges facing leaders is daunting: diminishing trust in higher education institutions; challenges to academic freedom and civil discourse; increasing urgency to address social and racial injustice; pressure to reduce barriers to education and ease financial stress on families; a sharper focus on student success, outcomes, value, and disparities; fundamental shifts in the economy; technological innovation; and a need to strengthen the humanities. Isaacson, Miller helps to identify the next generation of leaders that will rise to meet this moment.


Our Track Record

We have unparalleled commitment to advancing equity, diversity, and inclusion in higher education; in 2023, 53% of our placements identified as women and 36% were people of color. 77% of our searches are for repeat clients; an increasing number are international.

For more than 40 years, IM has developed and tested our understanding of the characteristics that define strong, visionary, inclusive, and effective leaders required to guide our higher education partners into the future.

Experience + Dedication

Evidence of Impact


Of our higher education placements in 2023 identified as women.


Of our higher education placements in 2023 were people of color.


Of our searches are for clients who return to us after being pleased with past results.


Searches in higher education since our founding.

How to Think Differently


An illustration of a person looking ahead to a challenge.

Demanding Times for System Heads

The Chronicle of Higher Education article, Demanding Times for System Heads, by Lee Gardner, featured commentary from Isaacson, Miller Founder and Chair of the Board, John Isaacson on the challenging nature of the current landscape for public university system heads.

Lead the Future

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