Sean Caron, managing director of Harvard Real Estate, has been named vice president for campus services at the University.
Since coming to Harvard in 2019, Caron has overseen asset, property, and construction project management for Harvard Real Estate’s commercial and institutional portfolio, which includes approximately 3.8 million square feet of space spread across 110 buildings with 350 tenants. He has also advised School and units on real estate needs.
“Sean has a unique capacity to develop and implement strategic approaches that balance short-term needs with long-term goals and priorities, which will be invaluable in his leadership of the distinct business lines and teams across Campus Services,” said Executive Vice President Meredith Weenick ’90, M.B.A. ’02. “From his leadership of Harvard Real Estate, he has a deep understanding of the programmatic needs and objectives of the University’s Schools and units, effectively aligning services and real estate transactions with priorities across our Harvard community. He is a valued adviser, bringing creativity as a problem-solver, which was particularly evident in his innovative and thoughtful leadership in meeting an array of challenges brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic.”
Those efforts included helping establish isolation housing for students, upgrading HVAC systems, supporting quarantine and isolation continency planning, and facilitating showering accommodations for the homeless on Church Street due to shelter challenges — all in addition to his responsibilities at Harvard Real Estate and advancing multiple strategic University real estate initiatives.
As vice president for campus services, Caron will manage approximately 1,800 employees across 12 business units. The operations in real estate, parking, and facility plants cover approximately 7.6 million square feet and provide essential services to the Harvard community. In addition, Caron will work to advance key priorities, including the decarbonization, sustainability, and resilience of campus facilities, advancing University plans in Allston, and championing diversity, equity, inclusion, and belonging in the workplace.
It is an assignment, he said, that will allow him to help take care of a place that is unique.
“Throughout my tenure in Harvard Real Estate, I have had the opportunity to meet a lot of different people in nearly every corner of the University, and the depth of the talent and the strong commitment to making the world a better place is profound and inspiring,” Caron said. “I think on a personal level, whatever challenges you have going on in your life, if you look around Harvard, there’s someone — usually one of the best in the world — working to solve that challenge or to make the world a better place. In this new role, I look forward to being an enabler of that work by providing the space and campus services that make it possible.”
Before coming to Harvard, Caron was chief of property operations and chief of staff at The Community Builders Inc., a nonprofit real estate developer that owns or manages more than 13,000 apartments and aims to build neighborhoods where people of all incomes can achieve their full potential. He also served as counsel at the Metropolitan Area Planning Council, the regional planning agency for Greater Boston. Caron, who holds a B.A. from George Washington University and a J.D. from Suffolk University Law School, lives in Medford with his wife, Erica, daughters Sidney and Hadley, and two dogs.
Caron will start in his new position Jan. 3.