Board Of Trustees

Current Board

Jennifer Grayburn (Chair)
Jennifer Grayburn received her M.A. and Ph.D. in the History of Art and Architecture from the University of Virginia. She was awarded the Robert Kellogg Memorial Fellowship from the Leifur Eiríksson Foundation in 2013 to pursue studies in Old Icelandic and complete her M.A. in Medieval Icelandic Studies at the University of Iceland. This experience supported her dissertation research on St. Magnus Cathedral and the architecture of the medieval North Sea world.

At the University of Virginia, Jennifer was a Scholars’ Lab Praxis Fellow and Makerspace Technologist. She has presented and published on digital scholarship and digital humanities topics, specifically 3D technologies, pedagogy, and the digital humanities. She served as a consultant for the Carnegie Museum of Art and the Council on Library and Information Resources.

Jennifer is currently the Assistant Director of Research Data & Open Scholarship at Princeton University. An advocate for emerging scholarly outputs and open scholarship, she served as a member of the Scholarly Publishing and Academic Resources Coalition (SPARC) Steering Committee from 2019-2021. She has held previous digital scholarship positions at Temple University and Union College, where she also taught courses on Viking Art. Before her current role as a member of the Board of Trustees, Jennifer served on the Screening Committee for the Leifur Eiríksson Foundation, acting as chair of the committee from 2019-2023.

Susan Greer Harris
Susan Greer Harris is a 1987 graduate of the University of Virginia School of Law. She did undergraduate work at Amherst College and the University of Minnesota, where she graduated magna cum laude with a B.A. in Political Science in 1982. She is currently the Secretary to the Board of Visitors and Special Assistant to the President at the University of Virginia, and has served in this role since May 2009. As the University of Virginia did not have a president during the first 85 years of its existence, the Secretary to the Board is the oldest administrative position at the University, created when the University was chartered in 1819. Ms. Harris is the first woman to hold the position.

Ms. Harris has served in the University of Virginia administration for 28 years, initially in the Office of the General Counsel and then as Assistant to the Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer, where she worked closely with specific units reporting to the EVP/COO including athletics, the UVA Medical Center, police, emergency management, the University of Virginia Foundation, and the University of Virginia Investment Management Company.

Ms. Harris is a trustee and secretary/treasurer of the University of Virginia Alumni Board of Trustees, and a trustee and secretary to the board of the Leifur Eiríksson Foundation. She also serves on the Board of Directors of Child Aid, a foundation that operates teacher training and literacy programs in Guatemala; the Colonnade Club, which is the faculty club of the University of Virginia; and the Foundation of the State Arboretum of Virginia. She is a former member and chair of the Charlottesville Salvation Army Advisory Board. Memberships include the Association of Governing Boards, the Association of Board Secretaries, the National Association of College and University Attorneys, the Virginia State Bar, and the American Bar Association.

Kristrún Heimisdóttir
Kristrún Heimisdóttir is a lawyer and currently a Fellow at Columbia University’s Center for Global Legal Transformation and a Doctoral Candidate at Columbia Law School. She is a member of the board of HB Grandi, one Iceland’s biggest seafood companies and also serves as an expert adviser for the Government of Iceland, her most recent projects an analysis, on behalf of the Foreign Ministry, on Iceland’s participation in the European Economic Area 1993-2018. and a chairmainship in a special commission concerning a notorious case of miscarriage of justice.

Kristrun has been an Assistant Professor of Law at the University of Akureyri. The Director General of the Icelandic Federation of Industries. She was Political Advisor to the Minister of Economic Affairs, Legal adviser to the Minister of Social Affairs and Political Advisor to the Minister of Foreign Affairs all positions held throughout the Financial Crisis Period in Iceland in 2008-2012. Before that she worked as a lawyer, as a Managing Director of the Reykjavik Academy and a sports commentator on RUV television and radio. She has been engaged in various social activities, as Honorary Secretary of the Icelandic Olympic Committee (a former elite soccer player herself for Reykjavik FC9, as chair of the board of Icelandic Innovation Fund, member of the board of Reykjavik University as well as university lecturer in law and philosophy. Kristrun represented Iceland in the Stoltenberg commission of 2008-2009 headed by Thorvald Stoltenberg which was assigned to formulate proposals for a joing security and defence policy for the Nordic Countries. She has served as a deputy member of the Board of the Central Bank of Iceland, as board member and chairperson in various entities of the Church of Iceland and was a Deputy Member of Parliament from 2003-2009. Kristrun holds a law degree from the University of Iceland, and was an Erasmus student in law in Leuven in Belgium and in Philosophy in Cork in Ireland. She focuses currently on academic research on the State as Backstop to Finance and the repercussions thereof to democracy and legitimacy – the res publica itself.

Ragnhildur Helgadóttir
Cand jur. (University of Iceland) 1997, LLM and S.J.D. (Virginia) 1999 and 2004. Professor at Reykjavik University since 2006. Author of a number of books and articles on Icelandic and Nordic Constitutional Law and History and Administrative Law and a recognized authority on the relationship between law and politics in the region. Has advised Parliament on constitutional matters and been an ad hoc judge in the District Court, Supreme Court and European Court of Human Rights. Chair of the Science Committee of the Icelandic Science and Innovation Board 2016-2022. Rector of Reykjavík University since 2021.

James E. Ryan
James E. Ryan serves as the ninth president of the University of Virginia.

An elected member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, and a leading expert on law and education, Ryan has written extensively about the ways in which law structures educational opportunity. His articles and essays address such topics as school desegregation, school finance, school choice, and the intersection of special education and neuroscience. Ryan is also the coauthor of the textbook Educational Policy and the Law and the author of Five Miles Away, A World Apart, which was published in 2010 by Oxford University Press. Ryan’s most recent book, Wait, What? And Life’s Other Essential Questions, based on his viral Harvard Commencement speech, was published in 2017 by HarperOne and was a New York Times bestseller. In addition, Ryan has authored articles on constitutional law and theory and has argued before the United States Supreme Court.

Before coming to UVA to serve as president, Ryan served as the Charles William Eliot professor and dean of the Harvard Graduate School of Education. Before his Harvard deanship, Ryan was the Matheson & Morgenthau Distinguished Professor at the University of Virginia School of Law. He also served as academic associate dean from 2005 to 2009 and founded and directed the school’s Program in Law and Public Service. Ryan has also been a visiting professor at Harvard and Yale Law Schools.

A first-generation college student, Ryan received his AB in American Studies, with distinction, from Yale University. Ryan earned his JD from the University of Virginia, which he attended on a full scholarship and from which he graduated first in his class. After law school, Ryan clerked for William H. Rehnquist, the late Chief Justice of the United States, and then worked in Newark, N.J., as a public interest lawyer before joining the law faculty at UVA.
A life-long athlete, Ryan discovered rugby in college and continued to play in law school, earning spots along the way on All-Ivy League, All-New England, and All-Virginia select sides. In more recent years, he has become an avid runner and has completed 12 consecutive Boston Marathons. Ryan and his wife, Katie, who is also a graduate of the University of Virginia School of Law and a special education attorney, have four children—Will, Sam, Ben, and Phebe.


  • Jennifer Grayburn (Chair)
  • Susan G. Harris (Secretary)
  • Margo Eppard (Treasurer)

Founding Board

  • Mr. Robert Kellogg (Chair)
  • Mr. Marshall Brement
  • Mr. Don Fry
  • Mr. Steingrímur Hermannsson
  • Ms. Sigríður Dúna Kristmundsdóttir