Carrie Besnette Hauser, Ph.D.
Colorado Mountain College president brings diverse skills in education and leadership
Since 2013, Dr. Carrie Besnette Hauser has served as president and CEO of Colorado Mountain College, a public institution enrolling nearly 20,000 students annually at eleven campuses in the central Rocky Mountains. Previous to CMC, Hauser held leadership roles at the Kauffman Foundation, Metropolitan State University of Denver and the Daniels Fund. While at Daniels, she was a loaned executive advising Denver’s mayor on a citywide college scholarship program and assisting the Metro Denver Sports Commission on an initiative to attract top-tier sporting events, including the Olympic Games. She co-chaired the 2012 Women’s Final Four.
Hauser’s background includes teaching assignments at UCLA, the University of Denver, and Colorado State University. She has held research and legislative staff roles as well as positions with the Western Interstate Commission for Higher Education and the University of Arizona, her undergraduate alma mater. She earned her master’s and Ph.D. degrees from UCLA and is a graduate of the Advanced Management Program at the Wharton School of Business.
She is currently a governor’s appointee to the Colorado Parks and Wildlife Commission and a member of the Great Outdoors Colorado and Glenwood Springs Chamber Boards of Directors, and the El Pomar Foundation Northwest Regional Council. At the national level, Hauser is a member of the Aspen Institute’s Society of Fellows, serves on the board of American Rivers, the Kansas City Federal Reserve Bank Economic Advisory Council and is past president of the National Scholarship Providers Association (NSPA).
Hauser’s past board service includes the Vail Valley Partnership, the Denver Metro Chamber of Commerce and its Foundation, the Metro Denver Economic Development Corporation, the Metro Denver Sports Commission, Visit Denver, and the American Red Cross Mile High Chapter. Two prior gubernatorial appointments include Colorado’s Blue Ribbon Commission on Health Care Reform and the Colorado Commission on Higher Education. She has been recognized as the 9News Leader of the Year and one of the Fifty for the Future of Colorado.
An avid outdoorswoman and athlete, Hauser has summited Mt. Kilimanjaro (raising funds for the NSPA), climbed to the Mt. Everest base camp, and held the proud title of “swamper” while working many summers for Hatch River Expeditions in the Grand Canyon, near her hometown of Flagstaff, Arizona. She and her husband enjoy skiing, hiking, boating, biking, and exploring the Rocky Mountain West and remote places around the world.
Follow Dr. Hauser at @CMCPresident