Steve Reifenberg is the Executive Director of the Helen Kellogg Institute for International Studies at the University of Notre Dame, where he also teaches a course on international development.
Before coming to Notre Dame in February 2010, he had worked for nearly two decades on international educational, negotiation and development issues at Harvard University. From 1996 to 2002, he served as the Executive Director of Harvard’s David Rockefeller Center for Latin American Studies (DRCLAS). In 2002, the University asked him to establish Harvard’s first-ever, university-wide office overseas. In August 2002, he moved with his family to Santiago, Chile and set up the DRCLAS Regional Office which manages Harvard’s student programs in Argentina, Bolivia, Chile, and Peru. The office also coordinates Harvard faculty research projects in areas ranging from architecture and archaeology to biology and public health in these countries. The Regional Office has become the model for Harvard initiatives in other parts of Latin America and in Asia.
Steve is the former Program Director for Latin America of the Conflict Management Group (CMG), an international non-profit organization created from the Harvard Negotiation Project at the Harvard Law School. From 1990 to 1993, he served as the Director of the Edward S. Mason Program in Public Policy and Management, jointly administered by the Kennedy School of Government and the Harvard Institute for International Development.
In the early 1980s, he lived and worked for two years at a small orphanage, Domingo Savio, in Santiago, Chile. His experiences from this time were the basis for his book: Santiago’s Children: What I Learned About Life Working at an Orphanage in Chile published by the University of Texas Press. He continues to be actively involved with Domingo Savio, now an after-school center, and also serves on numerous non-profit boards in Chile and the U.S. that deal with innovation, education, conservation, and expanding opportunities for poor children.
Steve is a graduate of Harvard University’s John F. Kennedy School of Government where he earned a Master in Public Policy. He also holds a Master in Print Journalism from Boston University and a B.A. in Philosophy from the University of Notre Dame. He lives in South Bend, Indiana with his wife, Chris Cervenak, and three children, Natasha, Alexandra and Luke.