Oct 20, 2016

New Executive Director

Dr. Oliver Schmidt

Dr. Oliver Schmidt is the new Executive Director of the German-American Fulbright Commission in Berlin. Both an executive manager in academia and a historian in his own right, the expert on transatlantic exchange will assume office – and succeed the late Dr. Rolf Hoffmann - on November 1, 2016.

Oliver Schmidt joins the Fulbright Commission with a lifetime of transatlantic experience and expertise. Born in Canada, he spent his first years there before coming to Germany. He studied modern history, social sciences and American studies at the Universities of Erlangen and Munich, Ohio University (Athens) and the European University Institute in Florence, Italy. He graduated from Harvard University with a Ph.D. in History. His dissertation addressed U.S. cultural diplomacy in Germany and the formation of transatlantic elites after World War II.

Dr. Schmidt served as Director of Media for the Bertelsmann Foundation, creating a program for the advancement of science writing and heading, among others, a task force on e-government | e-democracy.

As assistant professor of history and founding member and executive director of the Center for Metropolitan Studies (CMS) in Berlin, he helped build the graduate research program Berlin - New York, which originally involved Columbia, Fordham, CUNY, New York University and the three major Berlin universities. Since broadened to include Canadian scholars the network has engaged in interdisciplinary research about the modern metropolis.

Between 2010 and 2012, Oliver Schmidt joined his family to live in Bogotá, Colombia. In his latest post, he served as program head for the Joachim Herz Foundation in Hamburg, one of Germany´s major philanthropies, directing the Department for Personal Development.

The Fulbright Board and Commission staff as well as Fulbright fellows and alumni extend a warm welcome to Dr. Schmidt and look forward to working together.

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