Claude Steele, nominated as UC Berkeley provost.

Claude Steele, nominated as UC Berkeley provost. (UC Berkeley)

Claude Steele, a social psychology expert who is the dean of Stanford University’s Graduate School of Education, will become the provost of UC Berkeley, it was announced Monday.

UC Berkeley chancellor Nicholas Dirks on Monday announced his appointment of Steele, with whom he worked at Columbia University in the past. Steele’s nomination and salary as provost and executive vice chancellor -- the No. 2 job at the UC campus -- will be reviewed by the UC regents at their meeting next week.

“Claude is a world-class scholar, an extraordinarily gifted administrator, and a visionary leader with a deep commitment to teaching, innovation and collaboration,” Dirks said in a statement. Dirks was Columbia's executive vice president and dean of its arts and sciences faculty before becoming the UC Berkeley chancellor last June.

Steele has researched such issues as the effect of group stereotypes on academic achievement. He taught at Stanford for 18 years before becoming Columbia’s provost in 2009; he returned to Stanford as education dean in 2011.

Steele’s twin brother, Shelby Steele, is a noted conservative author and opponent of affirmative action who is a senior fellow at Stanford’s Hoover Institution.

If approved, Claude Steele, 68, is expected to start the UC job March 31. He would succeed George Breslauer, who is retiring after more than seven years in the position.



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