Grinnell College appoints chief of staff and vice president of administration


Myrna Y. Hernández will join Grinnell in July 2022

GRINNELL, Iowa – Myrna Y. Hernández has been appointed chief of staff and vice president of administration of Grinnell College. Hernández currently serves as vice president of student affairs and dean of students at the College of Wooster in Wooster, Ohio. She will begin work at Grinnell on July 1, 2022.

Hernández serves as a member of cabinet at Wooster and provides strategic and administrative oversight for the Division of Student Affairs. Her leadership has been credited with strengthening the student experience at Wooster.

“Myrna Hernández is deeply committed to the liberal arts and inclusive communities. She is an educator at heart,” said Grinnell College President Anne F. Harris. “We are honored— and I am thrilled — to have her join our Grinnell College community and excited about how she will share her expertise and vision within higher education to take on mission-aligned roles.”

As chief of staff and vice president of administration, Hernández will take on roles related to coordination of institutional planning processes, both in annual operational planning and longer-term strategic planning; operational efforts to create more intersections among divisions; sustained support of diversity, equity, and inclusion work for the college; facilitating connections with and among campus and community constituents; and assisting with special initiatives project management.

“In many ways, this position at Grinnell is a dream come true. I am both an educator and a student and I’ve always had a genuine curiosity about the operational workings of institutions and the people who shape the culture and the energy of an organization. I am overjoyed and honored to join President Harris and the multitudes of Grinnellians that are both constituents and caretakers of their treasured institution,” said Hernández.

During her 20-year career in higher education, Hernández has worked to implement education, policy, and processes around high-risk behavior, including sexual assault and binge drinking, and helped bring focus to diversity and inclusion issues. Most recently, she has focused on initiatives around student support and persistence, especially early-intervention processes, including increasing support for mental-health resources, financial needs of students, and support for BIPOC students.

A first-generation college student, Hernández has a bachelor’s degree in secondary education and a master’s in higher education and student affairs from Indiana University, Bloomington. She previously held positions at DePauw University, East Carolina University, University of Wisconsin-Madison, and Minnesota State University-Mankato. She has served in several professional associations.

Hernández is originally from Northwest Indiana, where much of her family still lives. She will be moving to Grinnell with her beagle-dachshund, Sophie.

About Grinnell College

Grinnell College, a private liberal arts college in Iowa founded in 1846, provides individually advised learning for intellectually engaged students to produce graduates who are prepared to navigate the world’s complexities and responsibly contribute to the common good. Grinnell enrolls 1,700 students from around the world, who earn bachelors. degrees in a range of disciplines across the humanities, arts and sciences. Grinnell’s rigorous academic program and campus life emphasize excellence in education through free inquiry and the open exchange of ideas, a diverse community and social responsibility and action. More information about Grinnell College is available at

Myrna Y. Hernández