Robert E. Anderson


Rob Anderson, Ph.D., serves as the fourth president of the State Higher Education Executive Officers (SHEEO) Association. As president, he collaborates with his staff, executive committee, and membership to better equip states to advance the value of higher education and provide greater educational opportunities for all students.

Dr. Anderson’s leadership has brought about meaningful change in the higher education landscape. He has initiated efforts to foster collaboration among colleges, universities, and government agencies, encouraging the sharing of best practices and innovative ideas to better serve students. By promoting partnerships and knowledge exchange, Dr. Anderson has helped create a more cohesive and effective higher education system.

Recognizing the importance of data-driven decision-making, Dr. Anderson has championed the use of data analysis and research to inform policy development. He has led initiatives to improve data collection and analysis methods, enabling policymakers to make evidence-based decisions that positively impact students and institutions, including the development and implementation of a P-20 data system in West Virginia.

Beyond his role as SHEEO president, Dr. Anderson has actively engaged with various educational organizations and policy nonprofits, serving on boards and committees dedicated to advancing higher education. These appointments have included Dr. Anderson’s current role as vice chair of the National Council for State Authorization Reciprocity Agreements (NC-SARA) Board of Directors, past chair of the Institute of Higher Education Policy (IHEP) Board of Directors, and fellow at the University of Georgia’s Louise McBee Institute of Higher Education.

Dr. Anderson has provided testimony before both federal and state education committees as well as presented his research throughout the United States and abroad. His opinion pieces have appeared in multiple publications including The Washington Post. His expertise and insights have been sought after by institutions and policymakers alike.

Prior to joining SHEEO in 2017, Dr. Anderson served as a vice chancellor at the University System of Georgia, executive vice chancellor for administration at the West Virginia Higher Education Policy Commission, and as the director of research and planning at the Tennessee Higher Education Commission. A native of Augusta, Georgia, Dr. Anderson has worked under four governors in three states throughout his 30 years of service within higher education. He has served as a college administrator and instructor piloting both learning communities and freshman seminar classes to improve student access and success.

Dr. Anderson earned a Ph.D. in higher education from the University of Georgia and a bachelor’s degree in English literature from The Citadel.

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See work by Robert E. Anderson

Rob Anderson Witness at Senate HELP Committee Hearing on Reauthorizing the Higher Education Act: Improving College Affordability

by Rob Anderson

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Statement from SHEEO President Robert Anderson, Ph.D., on the House stimulus legislation (“HEROES Act”)

by Annahita Jimmerson

“We applaud House leaders for introducing a federal stimulus bill that recognizes the budgetary challenges confronting states and their higher education systems today. The HEROES Act is sweeping in size and scope. Without an intervention of this size, states will make deep cuts to programs and services, including slashing critical investments in public higher education. These cuts will threaten educational quality, make college less affordable, and only serve to deepen…

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Statement from SHEEO President Robert Anderson, Ph.D., on the bipartisan COVID-19 stimulus deal:

by Annahita Jimmerson

“We applaud Congressional leaders and Administration officials for working together to reach a bipartisan deal on a federal stimulus package. As higher education works to address the financial fallout stemming from the COVID-19 pandemic, we welcome partnership and resources from the federal government. This stimulus package provides urgently needed financial assistance and administrative flexibility during this difficult time. The financial shortfalls facing higher education, however, will far exceed the funding…

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