Economist and compensation and labor market scholar Kevin F. Hallock, the Kenneth F. Kahn ’69 Dean and Joseph R. Rich ’80 Professor in the School of Industrial and Labor Relations, has been named dean of the Cornell SC Johnson College of Business, Provost Michael Kotlikoff announced Oct. 2.
Hallock’s term as Cornell SC Johnson dean will begin Dec. 15 and run through June 30, 2024. His appointment was approved by the Executive Committee of the Cornell Board of Trustees.
Kotlikoff said the search for a permanent ILR School dean will begin immediately and he plans to announce an interim dean next week.
“As an accomplished economist, scholar and administrator, Kevin provides the Cornell SC Johnson College of Business with the leadership to maximize its enormous potential,” Kotlikoff said. “His thorough familiarity with Cornell’s administrative workings is a significant asset, and the college will be well served by his deep understanding of business administration theory and practice.”
Among his accomplishments as ILR dean, Hallock guided the school through a strategic planning process, made important investments in the student experience and student well-being, and introduced an ILR initiative that brings together students, staff and faculty around a common theme (this year’s is “Technology and the Evolution of Work”). He also raised resources for investments in faculty and research, has taken steps to enhance staff well-being by investing in human resources, and led the transition of ILR’s New York City office from its current location on 34th Street to its new home at 570 Lexington Ave., which will open in January 2019.
Hallock expressed gratitude to his colleagues who have mentored, encouraged and supported him during his time at ILR. “ILR is so extraordinary, and thanks to the work of our exceptional students, staff, faculty and alumni, it is unique in higher education. The ILR School is on a clear trajectory to continue to enhance its important initiatives as the world leader in the study and practice of work, workers and workplace issues,” he said.
Hallock said he is “grateful and excited to start this new chapter at Cornell.”
“The Cornell SC Johnson College of Business, in its infancy, faces challenges, like many new organizations, and those challenges are part of what attracted me to this role,” he said. “But there is also enormous opportunity, outstanding strength and unique advantages in the college and its three schools. I am excited to work with its talented staff, students, faculty and alumni, and I am exceptionally optimistic about the future of the college.”
Cornell SC Johnson has achieved notable successes since its inception in early 2016. For example, in 2017-18, applications for open faculty positions were five times higher than prior years in some areas. Acceptance of offers was also high compared to historical levels, and the college has successfully hired 20 new faculty. Applications for undergraduate programs in the Charles H. Dyson School of Applied Economics and Management and the School of Hotel Administration grew by 80 percent between 2016 and 2018.
Hallock is an expert on executive compensation, compensation design and labor markets. His most recent research is on the relationship between the complexity of executive compensation contracts and corporate performance. His work has appeared in numerous academic journals including The American Economic Review, the Journal of Corporate Finance and the Journal of Financial and Quantitative Analysis. His research has been funded by many organizations, including the Sloan Foundation and the U.S. Departments of Labor and Education.
A member of the faculty since 2005, Hallock has served as ILR dean since February 2015, and he has been active on several university committees. He chaired Cornell’s Financial Policy Committee 2008-09 and served as the Donald C. Opatrny ’74 Chair of the universitywide Department of Economics 2012-15. He was also a member of the Provost’s Budget Model Task Force and is currently chair of the steering committee for the Cornell Student Experience Initiative. In 2009, he was the founding director of Cornell’s Institute for Compensation Studies. He spent the first 10 years of his academic career on the faculty at the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign, including an appointment in the College of Commerce and Business Administration (now the Gies College of Business).
Outside of Cornell, he has been a research associate at the National Bureau of Economic Research since 2003. In 2013, he was elected a fellow of the National Academy of Human Resources. He has consulted and served as an expert witness on issues of compensation, executive compensation, stock price reactions to labor market events, and antitrust in labor markets.
Hallock earned a bachelor’s degree in economics summa cum laude from the University of Massachusetts, Amherst, in 1991. At Princeton University, he earned a master’s degree in economics in 1993 and a Ph.D. in economics in 1995.
Hallock succeeds L. Joseph Thomas, who has served as Cornell SC Johnson’s interim dean since February, when founding dean Soumitra Dutta stepped down. Kotlikoff thanked Thomas for his service.
“Cornell owes Joe a great debt for his steady hand at the college’s helm for the past seven months. The continuity and administrative expertise he provided has enabled the college to continue to thrive while we’ve gone through an extensive search for a new dean,” Kotlikoff said.