Faculty Advisory Board

Dr. Sunil Kumar: President, Tufts University

Sunil Kumar is the president of Tufts University and assumed office on July 1, 2023. He is the 14th president of Tufts and the first person of color to hold the office. He also serves as a professor in the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering at Tufts University’s School of Engineering.

At Tufts, President Kumar is strongly committed to preserving and enhancing the emphasis on a liberal arts undergraduate education within a tight-knit and student-centered environment. He is also focused on enabling conditions that foster cutting-edge teaching and world-class research that serves both national and global interests through Tufts’ many graduate and professional schools.

Prior to Tufts, Dr. Kumar served as the 15th provost of Johns Hopkins University (JHU) from 2016-2023 and as Dean of the University of Chicago’s Booth School of Business, as well as the George Pratt Shultz Professor of Operations Management from 2011-2016. Before joining the Booth School of Business, he spent 14 years on the faculty of the Stanford University Graduate School of Business, where he was the Fred H. Merrill Professor of Operations, Information and Technology and served as the senior associate dean for academic affairs, overseeing the school’s MBA program and leading faculty groups in marketing and organizational behavior.

President Kumar’s research includes performance evaluation and control of manufacturing systems, service operations, and communications networks. In particular, he studies systems affected by stochastic variability via mathematical models. He also studies application of optimization methods and control theory to managerial problems.

Born in India, Dr. Kumar received a Master of Engineering degree in computer science and automation from the Indian Institute of Science in Bangalore and a Bachelor of Engineering degree from Mangalore University in Surathkal. He earned a PhD in electrical engineering from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.

Dr. James Rice: Chair, Tufts University Department of History

A sixth-generation Californian, Dr. Rice traveled “back East” for a B.A. in History at the Colorado College, then went on to earn a Ph.D. in early American History at the University of Maryland. Before coming to Tufts, he taught at a variety of institutions, including SUNY Plattsburgh, Washington College, and Tübingen University.

Dr. Rice’s scholarship and teaching are aimed at breaking down the barriers between what are often treated as separate subjects: between American history and Native American history, between colonial American and “prehistory,” between the national histories of what are today the United States, Mexico, and Canada, and above all between History and neighboring disciplines. Dr. Rice is currently staying busy by developing a new course on global environmental history while also working on two books: the first is a synthesis of Native American environmental history from Oaxaca to the Arctic and from the first human habitation of North America to the present, while the second is a reappraisal of England’s first permanent American colony (entitled Founding Massacres: Violence, Ambition, and the Birth of Virginia).

Dr. David Proctor: Senior Lecturer, Tufts University Department of History

David Proctor is a triple jumbo, receiving his B.A., M.A., and Ph.D. from Tufts. He has taught at Tufts as a senior section instructor and lecturer since 1996 specializing in the history of Europe, Byzantium, Southeastern Europe and papal-imperial relations. He is currently a Senior Lecturer in the Department of History and serves as adjunct Senior Lecturer in the Department of Classics and a member of the Core Faculty of the International Relations program, the Archaeology program, the Middle Eastern Studies program, and the Medieval Studies program.