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President's Biography

D. E. Lorraine Sterritt is the 20th president of Salem Academy and College, the oldest educational institution for women in the nation, founded by the Moravian Church in 1772.

Born and raised in Ireland, Dr. Sterritt moved to the U.S. in 1985 after earning her bachelor’s degree and her master’s of arts degree in French at The Queen's University of Belfast, Northern Ireland. She continued her education at Princeton University, earning a second master’s degree and a doctor of philosophy degree in French. Her deep interest in women writers led her to write her doctoral dissertation on the life and works of Louise Labé, the first sixteenth-century female poet of low birth to be published in her lifetime. She has also published on French women writers.

Her career of nearly 30 years in education in the U.S. began at Chatham Hall, an all-girls college-preparatory boarding school located in Chatham, Virginia, where she was Director of School and also taught French and Latin (1985-1991). From 1991-1996, Sterritt studied at Princeton University and served as Assistant Master of Wilson College. In 1996, she moved to Harvard University, where she was Associate Dean of Freshmen, followed by four years at the University of Pennsylvania as the Dean of Freshmen and Director of Academic Advising. From 2004-2010, she served in administrative roles at Stanford University, including as Associate Dean for Graduate and Undergraduate Studies for the School of Humanities and Sciences.

Most recently, Sterritt was the Dean for Administration at Harvard College and a member of the Faculty of Arts and Sciences at Harvard University. From 2010-2013 she led the planning and execution of programs for undergraduate education, student life, administration, and finance. That role included responsibility for development, financial planning, information technology, capital facilities planning, and human resources.  She also designed and led the strategic planning process for Harvard College.

Sterritt has served as the President of Salem Academy and College since July 1, 2014. She lives in Winston-Salem, N.C. with her spouse Norbert (Bert) Lain.

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