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'All it can be'

New chancellor named

Dr. Susan Knight


By Mandy Cook

Robert Simmonds, chair of the Board of Regents of Memorial University, and Dr. Gary Kachanoski, the university's president and vice-chancellor, joined together recently to welcome newly appointed university chancellor Dr. Susan Dyer Knight.

"Dr. Knight has been involved with Memorial in various capacities over the years and is very familiar with the university. She is an excellent choice and a most welcome addition to the Memorial community," said Dr. Kachanoski.

In addition to her considerable accomplishments in music, Dr. Knight is an honorary degree recipient (doctor of laws, '04) and alumna of Memorial University (bachelor of music and bachelor of music education, '83). She was named the university's Alumna of the Year in 2000. In herprofessional life, she has maintained contact and involvement in music education at the university and beyond.

Dr. Knight recently sat down for a one-on-one interview with the Gazette. During the conversation with editor Mandy Cook, Dr. Knight shared the numerous personal connections and far-reaching community partnerships she has enjoyed with Memorial throughout the years.

Dr. Knight emphasized the importance of the chancellor's ceremonial role during spring and fall convocation ceremonies each year, as well as the responsibilities associated with being an ex-officio member of Memorial's Board of Regents and the Senate. Ultimately, though, Dr. Knight said she is keen to communicate the unique and historic place Memorial University has in her heart and in the hearts of Newfoundlanders and Labradorians.

"As chancellor, you represent the university in this place, in our place, in our country and beyond and whatever way you can be," she said. "Memorial's whole fusion with Newfoundland and Labrador, and making people aware of who and what we are here and what we're about and what we intend to contribute – I feel a very strong intellectual connection with the whole sense of what Memorial is and wants to be about and all it can be."

Mr. Simmonds and Dr. Kachanoski also thanked Memorial's outgoing chancellor, Gen. Rick Hillier (ret'd).

"Rick Hillier has served Memorial University with dedication and a determination to raise our profile across the country and beyond," said Mr. Simmonds. "The university and the people of the province are deeply thankful for the singular contributions he has made."

Dr. Kachanoski added: "In addition to the wise counsel that Chancellor Hillier provided to the university, he brought his considerable talents, commitment and passion for leadership. At our convocation ceremonies, where he presided as chancellor, he served as a role model to thousands of our graduates and their families. And he led our development activities, volunteering to Memorial and to his home province his valuable time in this critically important role. I join the chair in expressing the thanks of the entire university community to Rick and also to his wife Joyce who, as a team, represented and supported Memorial selflessly, here in the province and across the country."

Gen. Hillier took the message of Memorial across the country, enhancing the profile and reputation of the university. In addition to many other contributions, he led the successful Dare To fundraising campaign which to date has raised more than $63 million in support of student scholarships, research and infrastructure renewal at Memorial.

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