Susan Whealler Johnston

Executive Vice President, AGB

Dr. Susan Whealler Johnston serves as executive vice president of the Association of Governing Boards of Universities and Colleges (AGB). She joined the staff in July 2000 as director of private sector programs and soon became vice president for programs. She has served as executive vice president since 2007. At AGB she has directed the association’s projects on boards and academic affairs, assessment, fundraising, and strategic finance. She has nearly 30 years’ experience in higher education, including 18 years as a faculty member and administrator. At Rockford College, Johnston served as dean of academic development, directing the college’s strategic planning, assessment, and faculty development efforts as well as a number of grant-funded activities linking the college and the community.  She served as associate dean at Regent’s College in London, England, from 1995 to 1996.

Johnston also has experience as a communications consultant in business and industry. She has worked with governmental and non-profit agencies, and has served on boards of several local social service agencies. She is on the board of directors of the Association for Consortia Leadership, the advisory board for the Policy Center for the First Year of College, the National Institute for Learning Outcomes Assessment, and the boards of trustees of Rollins College and Rockford College.

Johnston earned her Ph.D. and M.A. in 18th century British literature from Purdue University, and her undergraduate degree in English (summa cum laude) from Rollins College. She was awarded an honorary doctorate from Rockford College. Her research, publications, and presentations are in the areas of governance, higher education, and Jane Austen.  Included among her recent publications are AGB’s Survey of Higher Education Governance, a chapter on governing boards and civic engagement in Higher Education for the Public Good: Emerging Voices from a National Movement, and a chapter on shared governance in Faculty Governance and Effective Academic Administrative Leadership.  


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