Dr. Jill Derby has nearly 30 years’ experience working nationally and internationally in higher education governance. In 2011 she received a U.S. Senate appointment to the National Advisory Committee on Institutional Quality and Integrity, which counsels the U.S. Secretary of Education on higher education.
Derby currently serves as the chair of the American University of Iraq in Kurdistan and in 2015 was a keynote speaker on the topic of governance at the Middle East North Africa (MENA) Higher Education Summit in Abu Dhabi. She is the vice chair of the Guinn Center for Policy Priorities, a centrist think tank for economic and educational policy in Nevada. Between 1988 and 2006, she served on the Nevada Board of Regents, including three terms as board chair.
As chair of the Nevada Board of Regents, Derby provided critical leadership during a period of rapid growth. She led the initiative to establish Nevada’s first state college, created a board development committee to improve board performance, focused the board’s attention on statewide strategic planning during a transition of system heads.
Before and while serving on the Nevada Board of Regents, Derby was involved in policy making at the state level, serving on the Nevada Supreme Court Gender Bias Task Force, the State Judicial Selection Commission, and the Nevada Humanities Commission. She served on the gubernatorial transition team in 2007, the Nevada Blue Ribbon Task Force on Education Reform in 2010, and to a statewide Community College Task Force in 2011.
Derby received her B.A. from the University of Nevada, Las Vegas, and both her M.A. and Ph.D. from the University of California, Davis, all in cultural anthropology.