About Julian Vasquez Heilig

Julian Vasquez Heilig leads nearly 3,000 students, staff and faculty as the Dean of the University of Kentucky College of Education. He is also a tenured professor of Educational Policy Studies and Evaluation. While at UK, the College of Education has achieved its highest ever U.S. News national rankings (top 30 among public colleges of education and top 15 overall in the nation online).

He has held six academic leadership roles in higher education institutions (Big 12 Research I, SEC Research I and in the nation’s largest state system of higher education) and has led in a community-engaged, innovative, equity-minded and transformative approach. See major accomplishments at bit.ly/ProfJVHcv

Dean Vasquez Heilig’s multimodal, interdisciplinary education policy and leadership research is primarily focused on K-12 and higher education policy and leadership that impacts diversity and inclusion. The sum of his scholarship is more than 70 peer-reviewed articles, chapters, law reviews, and reports.

He has been honored with more than 30 teaching, research and service recognitions including Harvard’s Education Next top ten K-12 education policy voices in social media, Diversity in Education Magazine’s Multicultural Champion for 2015, and the passage of California Assembly Resolution 1459— which commended his state and national impact in the field of K-12 education. He was selected for the 2021 AASCU Millennium Leadership Initiative Presidential Protégé and 2020 Rutgers University Aspiring Executive Leader programs.

Dean Vasquez Heilig has served on multiple governing boards and conveyed invited testimony and input for local, state and national legislative bodies. He has also served as a volunteer education policy advisor and provided educational policy input for the Obama and Biden presidential and the Newsom gubernatorial campaigns. He has also served on the Executive Committee and as Education Chair for the NAACP state conferences of Kentucky and California.

His research has been cited by the New York Times, Washington Post, Associated Press, USAToday, Education Week, Huffington Post and other print and electronic media outlets. He has also appeared on local and national radio and TV including CBS, PBS, NBC, NPR, Univision, and MSNBC.

Dean Vasquez Heilig received his Ph.D. in Educational Policy Analysis and Administration and a Master’s degree in Sociology from Stanford University. He also earned a Master’s in Higher Education—with a year in the Ford School of Public Policy— and a B.A. in History and Psychology from the University of Michigan.

Follow him on Twitter @ProfessorJVH.