Kevin Dehmer, MPP ’08 Heldrich Center Executive Director, Nominated to be Commissioner of NJDOE

January 31, 2024

Kevin Dehmer MPP ’08, Executive Director and Senior Researcher at Rutgers University’s Heldrich Center for Workforce Development, has been nominated by New Jersey Governor Phil Murphy to be the next Commissioner of the New Jersey Department of Education (NJDOE). He will succeed Acting Commissioner Dr. Angelica Allen-McMillan, who announced her retirement after three years in the position.

Dehmer previously served in leadership positions at the NJDOE, including twice serving as the Acting Commissioner. During his tenure as NJDOE Assistant Commissioner and Chief Financial Officer, he oversaw all aspects of public school funding in the state, including allocating more than $11 billion in state aid annually and over $1 billion in federal grants.

“Ensuring that New Jersey’s schools are ready to meet the ever-changing and evolving needs of our communities is crucial. Nobody is better prepared to meet this charge than Kevin, who has spent more than 15 years at the New Jersey Department of Education, including two stints as Interim Commissioner. His wealth of experience in education policy and proven commitment to improving educational outcomes for all New Jersey students will make him an indispensable asset,” said Governor Murphy. “A resounding thank you to Angelica for her leadership during incredibly challenging times for our schools. I wish her all the best in her retirement.”

“It is an incredible honor to be selected to serve as the Commissioner of the New Jersey Department of Education. Thank you, Governor Murphy, for the opportunity to continue advancing our shared mission of uplifting our best-in-the-nation public schools to ensure all students have the opportunity to succeed,” said Dehmer. “I look forward to reprising my role as commissioner in a more permanent capacity and getting to work on behalf of our students, educators, and our school communities.”

During his tenure at the Heldrich Center, Dehmer has provided outstanding leadership, supervising over 25 research and administrative professionals on multi-million-dollar projects aimed at raising the effectiveness of state and federal education, workforce, and social programs. He has been integrally involved in strengthening the New Jersey Statewide Data System and assessing strategies for addressing the shortage of teachers in New Jersey’s schools.

Dr. Carl Van Horn, Heldrich Center Director and Distinguished Professor of Public Policy, commented, “I congratulate Kevin on his nomination to lead the Department of Education. I am confident he will make a very positive impact on the lives of New Jersey’s students, families, teachers, and schools. My colleagues and I are deeply grateful to Kevin for his contributions to the Center and wish him much success during the next stage of his extraordinary career.”

A native of Minnesota, Kevin earned a Master of Public Policy from the Bloustein School in 2008 and was also a Graduate Fellow at Rutgers’ Eagleton Institute of Politics. He earned a Bachelor’s degree in Economics and Political Science from St. John’s University (MN).

About the Heldrich Center 

Established in 1998, the Heldrich Center, located at Rutgers’ Bloustein School of Planning and Public Policy, is a widely recognized national leader in research on the effectiveness of workforce development, education, and social policies and programs that aim to assist individuals in obtaining jobs, advance their careers, or return to work after periods of unemployment. Learn more:

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