Karl F. Koster, acting director of the Office of Corporate Relations, was named director of the Office of Corporate Relations (OCR) following a search conducted by a committee of senior faculty and Resource Development staff.
Mr. Koster's appointment, effective June 1, was announced by Vice President for Resource Development Barbara Stowe and Director of Development Stephen Dare.
"It is with great pleasure that we announce the appointment of Karl Koster to the position of director of Corporate Relations," Mr. Dare said. "Karl brings to this position excellent management experience, strong relationships with senior officers and faculty around the Institute, expertise in university/industry relations and a lifetime of MIT history."
OCR works with the senior administration and faculty leadership of MIT to develop and implement strategies for enhancing corporate involvement with the Institute, including corporate partnerships and a number of major international programs for MIT. Also included in OCR is the Industrial Liaison Program, which this year is celebrating its 50th anniversary.
Mr. Koster, after graduating from Brown University with a BA in geology and economics in 1974, worked as a diamond buyer in the Central African Republic before receiving the SM from MIT's Sloan School of Management in 1980. At the Sloan School he concentrated on international business management and the management of technological innovation.
Mr. Koster worked as a management consultant for seven years in Europe, Latin America and the United States on projects for private and public-sector organizations. He also consulted with a number of international agencies, most recently the Inter-American Development Bank, on organizational and human resource development issues. He is fluent in Spanish.
Mr. Koster joined MIT in 1987 as an officer in the Industrial Liaison Program. He was promoted to director of corporate development in 1991 and had served as acting director of corporate relations since December 1997.
Speaking of his priorities for OCR, Mr. Koster said, "In order to contribute to the enhancement of MIT's overall corporate relationships, we will concentrate on four key objectives in the coming years: first, understanding and extending MIT's company relationships; second, strengthening our internal MIT relationships; third, delivering innovative, highest-quality service and support to the corporate and MIT communities; and fourth, maintaining MIT's leadership in corporate relations by attracting and retaining the best staff possible.
"In particular, a major priority for the coming year is the implementation of our Faculty Liaison Plan, which has received enthusiastic backing from the faculty leadership and the OCR Faculty Committee. This plan seeks to enhance our support of School-based corporate fundraising priorities while simultaneously strengthening the role of faculty, particularly junior faculty, in our ILP activities," Mr. Koster said.
A version of this article appeared in the September 11, 1999 issue of MIT Tech Talk (Volume 44, Number 2).