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Anne Kern Honored by French Embassy

Dean for global strategy and international programs was awarded the insignia of Chevalier of the Order of Arts and Letters.

Anne Kern, dean for global strategy and international programs, was awarded the insignia of Chevalier of the Order of Arts and Letters by Bénédicte de Montlaur, Cultural Counselor of the French Embassy, on Wednesday, December 5 at the Cultural Services of the French Embassy in New York.

The Order of Arts and Letters (Ordre des Arts et des Lettres) was established in 1957 to recognize eminent artists and writers, as well as people who have contributed significantly to furthering the arts in France and throughout the world.

Kern received this distinction in recognition of her significant contributions to the study, dissemination, and appreciation of French and Francophone film in the US, as well as the impact of these contributions on both sides of the Atlantic.

Anne Kern poses with others at Awards Ceremony for Chevalier of the Order of Arts and Letters

Kern, who is also associate professor of film and cinema studies, in 2018 became the first dean for global strategy here at Purchase. In her new role, she continues the work she started as the founding director of the Transnational Film Project, in which young filmmakers from countries including France, the U.S., Benin, and Haiti travel and collaborate to make short films.

Currently, she is leading the college’s effort to be the first U.S. university to make a major, long term investment in ongoing educational opportunities for both American and Beninese students in Benin and the U.S. Building on the experience gained in Benin, Kern is leading a similar effort to establish programming and partnerships in Haiti.

Kern has also served as a member the jury at the Festival du Film Francophone d’Angoulême in 2014, and for three years (2015–17) she was the director of programming for the Focus on French Cinema festival (6,000 spectators every year).

Fluent in French, she has a seat on the Selection Committee of American universities benefitting from the Tournées Film Festival program, a program of the Cultural Services of the French Embassy in the United States that has since 1995 given more than 500,000 American students the chance to participate in screenings of classic and contemporary French film.  She is also a member of the Film Advisory Board of the Avon Theatre Film Center in Stamford, CT, and was a board member at the Alliance Française of Greenwich, CT for over a decade.