BLOOMINGTON, Ind. – Idalene “Idie” Kesner announced on April 8 that she will step down as dean of the Indiana University Kelley School of Business, effective July 31, and return to teaching.
Kesner, an alumna who earned her MBA and doctorate at Kelley, became dean in May 2013 after holding several leadership roles at the school.
The first woman to lead Kelley, she directed the school through a prodigious period in its history that has included growth in undergraduate and graduate enrollments without diluting admissions standards, greater student diversity and international expansion. Today, Kelley has a total enrollment of 14,471 students at IU Bloomington, IUPUI, and online worldwide.
Prior to her appointment as dean, she chaired the Kelley School’s Full-Time MBA Program from 2003 to 2006 and the Department of Management and Entrepreneurship from 2006 to 2009. She co-directed the school’s Consulting Academy from 1996 to 2003. From 2009 until her appointment as interim dean in October 2012, she was associate dean of faculty and research.
Before returning to teach at Kelley in 1995, Kesner had a titled professorship at the Kenan-Flagler Business School at the University of North Carolina, where she taught for 12 years.
Kesner’s research is in the areas of corporate boards of directors, chief executive succession, corporate governance, and mergers and acquisitions, and she has published articles in numerous journals including Academy of Management, Strategic Management Journal, Journal of Management and Harvard Business Review. She has taught in more than 100 executive programs and served as a consultant for many national and international firms working on strategic and board-related issues.
She currently sits on the boards of various companies and has served on the board of the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business, the main accrediting body for business schools. In 2019, she became the second woman to be named “Dean of the Year” by Poets & Quants, a leading news site about business education.
“It has been an honor serving as dean for the Kelley School for 10 years — one year as interim dean and nine years as dean,” Kesner said. “I won’t recount the many accomplishments of our Kelley faculty, staff, students, and alumni over this period, but it’s safe to say that as a group we have achieved much. Because of you, this school is positioned well for the future.
“I am grateful that you have allowed me to be in your good company,” she added. “Nothing in my career before or after will compare to serving this great organization and being part of this great family. Thank you for granting me the privilege of serving as dean for this amazing school.”
An interim dean will be announced in the near future.