Image of a woman in a black turtleneck sweater
Apr 2022

Greetings and Getting Started

Dear RISD Alumni Community,

I am thrilled to write to you today as I end my first week as RISD’s 18th president and as we embark upon the second half of the spring semester.

Being here feels wonderful. I've quickly learned how the contributions of the Alumni Association help to make RISD a vibrant institution with a potent worldwide network. Your pride in this institution and your engagement, volunteerism, advocacy and philanthropic support are crucial to RISD’s continued success. Thank you.

Many have asked me what I hope to accomplish as president. The first thing I want to do is learn more. So, guided by the excellent work of the Presidential Introduction and Engagement Committee, to whom I extend my heartfelt gratitude, my immediate focus is to immerse myself in our community and learn as much as I can from each of you.

So far, I have met so many students, faculty and staff. There is a great deal of joy and optimism in the air, buoying and reflective of RISD’s past and, importantly, our future. Some shared what brought them here, what has kept them here and what excites them about our future. I love hearing those stories and their vision. They help me understand RISD, and I know that hearing from you will deepen that understanding.

I look forward to meeting many of you at Commencement + Reunion Weekend, held June 2-5, and at my inauguration, scheduled for October 7-8. If you cannot make it to campus, perhaps we can connect as I travel domestically (and in time, globally!) to meet alumni. Be on the lookout for events hosted by the RISD club in your region. I’ll be there—and I hope you will be too! And please, be honest and forthcoming. I want to hear it all—tell me what RISD means to you, what you find joyful about this place and what opportunities you see.

Crystal Williams
Crystal Williams