Jacobs Institute Welcomes William Humnicky as Executive Director

January 24, 2024 | 2:57 pm

The Jacobs Institute for Design Innovation is delighted to announce the appointment of William Humnicky as its next Executive Director. He is set to commence his term on February 5th, succeeding Gwynne Keathley, who began her tenure at Jacobs in January 2020.

William brings a range of expertise and skills as well as a creative moxie that will feel right at home within the Jacobs Institute. He is a seasoned administrative leader with sophisticated experience in finance, management, and diplomacy. He has continuously been an advocate for cultural diversity and has demonstrated a commitment to advancing principles of equity and inclusion in the communities he has supported. William also shares a passion for design, technology, and creativity engagement and is excited to help advance the mission of the Jacobs Institute.

Prior to joining us at Jacobs, William served as Director of Operations and Planning at the Simon Institute for the Theory of Computing at UC Berkeley. There, he expanded the Institute’s scope and adopted new technologies. Before the Simons Institute, William served as a Foreign Service Officer with the U.S. Department of State at the U.S. embassies in Nepal, Ukraine, Zimbabwe, and Sri Lanka. As a diplomat, he designed programs and provided analyses that addressed societal issues such as poverty, health care, and human rights, particularly for marginalized communities.

Before pivoting into diplomacy, William advised institutional investors as a high-yield and corporate bond research analyst with a specialty in the technology and media sectors. Immediately after earning his MBA, William served as an MBA Enterprise Corps volunteer in Russia where he assisted Russian businesspeople transition to a market economy.

William earned the Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA) designation. He obtained both a masters of business administration in finance and marketing and a bachelor’s degree in economics from the University of Rochester.

William resides in Berkeley with his family where he enjoys tinkering in his workshop, competing in storytelling slams, and running/cycling the local hills.

A very warm welcome aboard, William!