Isabel Roche joined the Bennington faculty in 2002 and was appointed Interim President in 2019.
A scholar of French literature, Roche focuses her research on the 19th-century French novel and French Romanticism. She is the author of Character and Meaning in the Novels of Victor Hugo (Purdue University Press, 2006) and has published articles in The French Review, French Forum, and Contemporary Literary Criticism Yearbook. She also wrote the introduction and notes to the Barnes & Noble English-language publications of Victor Hugo’s Notre-Dame de Paris (2004) and Gaston Leroux’s The Phantom of the Opera (2006).
Roche has also worked as a translator and a consultant and received a grant in 2001 from the French Embassy to work with new technology in the language classroom. She received a BA (magna cum laude) from Bates College and her MA and PhD (honors) from New York University. Her previous teaching positions include The Cooper Union, SUNY Stony Brook, and Williams College. She was appointed Dean of the College in 2011 and Provost and Dean in 2015.