President Garrett announces 16th provost

Dear Members of the Cornell Community,

Mike demonstrates deep knowledge of Cornell and has a superb record of accomplishments as a scholar and administrator, both here and at the University of Pennsylvania. The breadth of his insight and vision, paired with skilled leadership, have been essential to the Veterinary College's growth, record of innovation and collaboration, and academic and clinical prominence during his eight years as dean. His plan to transform the College's teaching facilities also will reshape its programs and the experience of its faculty and students. Mike is an exceptional educator who has continued to teach and mentor undergraduate students, as well as graduate and professional students, while serving as dean. In his new role, he will remain active in research, continuing his lab's internationally recognized work.

I am confident that the entire university will benefit from Mike's qualities and abilities. As provost, he will lead a strategic planning process for Cornell that will begin this fall and conclude by December 2016. Other critical endeavors will include recruiting and retaining excellent faculty at all ranks and supporting them in their work, and implementing strategies to increase our externally supported research. Mike will help enhance deep collaborations among Ithaca and Weill Cornell Medical College and Cornell Tech, and oversee the successful launch of Cornell Tech's new campus. He will also continue to ensure that Cornell's reach is global, supporting our students, staff and faculty as they work to understand and solve problems of international importance.

Among Mike's top priorities will be ensuring the successful implementation of the budget model and working with me to build adequate resources to realize our ambitions. As provost, he will collaborate with the faculty and deans to ensure that our undergraduate experience is meaningful, rigorous and prepares our students to succeed in the world and be intellectually curious. He will continue to support our outstanding graduate students and work with all the deans to create additional academically demanding professional degree programs that will extend our reach and provide more excellent students with new opportunities, some of which will be delivered through new pedagogical technology and techniques.

I want to recognize our colleague Harry Katz, the Jack Sheinkman Professor of Collective Bargaining at the School of Industrial and Labor Relations, for his service in the critical role of interim provost. Harry contributed strong leadership and valuable judgment when he stepped in during a complex time of transitions and other challenges for Cornell. I extend my personal thanks to Harry, and I do so on behalf of all his university colleagues. When he returns from his leave, he will rejoin us as an active scholar, respected teacher and academic leader.

I also thank the advisory search committee and those who met with the candidates and provided important insight and guidance. This was a comprehensive search with strong diversity representation among a pool of 125 initial prospects.

Please join me in congratulating Provost Kotlikoff and supporting his leadership as we work together, as a community, to advance the academic excellence of our great university.

Elizabeth Garrett