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Farnaz Khadem to Step Down as Chief Communications Officer

January 17, 2019

To: Caltech Faculty and Staff
From: Diana Jergovic
Vice President for Strategy Implementation
Acting Vice President, Development & Institute Relations
Date: January 18, 2019
Re: Farnaz Khadem

Farnaz Khadem, Caltech's Chief Communications Officer, has announced her intention to step down on February 8, 2019. Farnaz has accepted the position of vice president for university communications at Stanford University.

Since joining Caltech in 2016, Farnaz has transformed the communications function at the Institute. She has created an effective and efficient campus communications organization, forged strong relationships with communicators across campus and at JPL, and defined the Institute's narrative for internal and external audiences. Under her leadership, the Office of Strategic Communications has strengthened the Institute's relationships with global media and made significant progress conveying Caltech's discoveries and accomplishments to relevant audiences. Caltech now has the capability to use a broad range of communications platforms, from video and social media to a new flagship magazine, to more effectively tell the Institute story. Farnaz formed Caltech's first Communicators' Council, bringing together individuals across campus and JPL to ensure consistency of message, leverage best practices, and educate and inform fellow communicators.

Farnaz has served Caltech with professional distinction and unflappable poise. I have enjoyed working with Farnaz and know that she will be as successful at Stanford as she was here. Farnaz came to Caltech from SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory at Stanford, previously holding other communications positions in academia and in private industry. Farnaz began her professional career as a diplomat in the Foreign Service.

We have begun the work to identify Farnaz's successor, and I will keep you posted as we move forward. If you have questions about the communications function during the transition phase, please do not hesitate to contact me directly.

Please join me in thanking Farnaz for her dedicated service to Caltech and wishing her well in her new role at Stanford.