Katherine Lapp

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Katherine Lapp
Nationality American
Alma mater Fairfield, B.A. '78
Hofstra, J.D. '81
Years active 2009-Present
Employer Harvard University
Home town Cedarhurst, New York
Title Executive Vice President
Chief Administrative Officer
Religion Roman Catholic

Katherine Lapp is the executive vice president and chief administrative officer of Harvard University[1] Boston Magazine named Lapp Boston's 42nd Most Powerful Person in 2015.[2]


In 2015, Boston Magazine named Lapp Boston's 42nd Most Powerful Person. According to the magazine, "Lapp is overseeing Harvard (University)'s ambitious 10-year development plan in Allston, and having joined Massachusetts Governor (Charlie) Baker's MBTA advisory panel, she'll help determine Boston's transportation future as well."[3]

Previously, Lapp was executive vice president for business operations for the University of California.[4] Prior to becoming a University executive, Lapp had a distinguished career in leadership roles in city and state government in New York, including serving as executive director and chief executive officer of the Metropolitan Transportation Authority, North America’s largest regional transportation network.[5] She was appointed to the position by former New York State Governor George Pataki in 2002 and served until the end of the Pataki Administration in 2006. As head of the MTA, she oversaw the New York City mass transit system, Metro North, the Long Island Rail Road, and several bridges and tunnels. She was MTA Executive Director during the 2005 New York City Transit Strike.

Prior to joining the MTA, Lapp served as New York state director of criminal justice and commissioner of the criminal justice services department from 1997–2001, New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani's criminal justice coordinator from 1994–97, and chief of staff and special counsel to the deputy mayor for public safety for New York City Mayor David Dinkins from 1990-93.


Lapp received her B.A. in 1978 from Fairfield University and her J.D. in 1981 from Hofstra University Deane School of Law.


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Preceded by
Marc Shaw
Executive Director of the New York Metropolitan Transportation Authority
2002 – 2007
Succeeded by
Elliot G. Sander