Richard Freeland Joins Maguire Associates

Richard M. Freeland, Ph.D., former President of Northeastern University and former Massachusetts Commissioner of Higher Education, has joined Maguire Associates as a senior consultant. Richard brings deep industry experience, research expertise and scholarly accomplishment – traits that have also distinguished Maguire Associates for nearly 35 years.

Richard will strengthen the capacity for Maguire with strategic positioning and executive coaching to supplement our established services in enrollment management and research solutions. Systematic efforts to define, implement and market an effective competitive strategy are critical to success in an increasingly challenging academic marketplace. Richard’s background in both the private and public higher education sectors will be a critical asset in supporting institutional leaders as they address these challenges. At Northeastern, he led the transformation of an unselective, low-ranking, locally oriented campus into a highly selective, top-tier national university. As Commissioner, he worked with public community colleges and four-year universities, competing in the most crowded academic marketplace in the United States. 

Maguire’s experience working with Boards and Presidents in the area of enrollment management has made us keenly aware that successful efforts to attract and retain students must build on and reflect well-thought-out positioning strategies shaped at the highest levels of a college or university and embraced throughout the organization. Such strategies warrant review as external conditions change, competitive realities shift and aspirations evolve, possibly with the appointment of a new President. Richard will lead our Company’s efforts to work with institutional leaders at such moments, with support from the Maguire team and our full suite of management solutions capabilities.

In addition to his leadership of Northeastern and the Massachusetts Department of Higher Education, Richard has served for the past five years on the Board of Clark University, where he is currently Vice Chair and Chair of the Academic Affairs Committee. Prior to his appointment at Northeastern, he was system Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs at the City University of New York during years when CUNY was confronted with sharp declines in state and city support. Prior to CUNY, during a long career at the University of Massachusetts in Boston, he served successively as Director of Educational Planning, founding Dean of the College of Professional Studies and Dean of Arts and Sciences.

Richard is an accomplished historian of higher education and of American political history. He currently teaches both subjects at Northeastern University. He wrote a provocative study of the early years of the Cold War, The Truman Doctrine and the Origins of McCarthyism, published by Knopf in 1972. After turning his attention to academic administration, he wrote Academia’s Golden Age, a well-regarded history of universities in Massachusetts between 1945 and 1975, published by Oxford University Press in 1992. It was in the course of work on the latter book that he became aware of Jack Maguire’s ground-breaking innovations in enrollment management at Boston College, which provided the starting point for a relationship with Jack and with Maguire Associates that has continued. We are pleased that – after working with us for many years in various capacities – Richard is now officially joining Maguire Associates. He adds luster to our well-established brand and deepens our connection to the industry we serve.