Michael Lee-Chin appointed chancellor of Wilfrid Laurier University Communications, Public Affairs & Marketing

Renowned businessman, investor and philanthropist Michael Lee-Chin has been appointed chancellor of Wilfrid Laurier University.

The appointment has been unanimously approved by Laurier’s Board of Governors, with the unanimous support of the Senate, and will take effect Oct. 28, 2011 at an official installation ceremony at the university’s fall convocation. Lee-Chin succeeds John A. Pollock, who has served as Laurier’s chancellor since March 31, 2008.

“Michael Lee-Chin epitomizes Laurier’s institutional proposition of inspiring lives of leadership and purpose,” said Max Blouw, Laurier’s president and vice-chancellor. “His internationally recognized achievements in the business and investment arenas are matched by his astonishing record of philanthropic work. He is an ideal choice for this key role as the university celebrates its centennial and lays the groundwork for a bold and influential second century.”

Lee-Chin is Laurier’s eighth chancellor since the university became a public institution in 1973. As chancellor, Lee-Chin will be a member of the Board of Governors and Senate, and will serve on the Senate honorary degree committee and the Board development committee. He will also preside over graduation ceremonies and will officially bestow all degrees and diplomas. Chancellors of the university generally serve for a term of four years and may be appointed to a second term.

“It is a great honour and a pleasure for me to accept this position as Laurier’s chancellor,” Lee-Chin said. “I have been impressed by the university and by the track record and energy of its people. I look forward to doing whatever I can in my new role to help the university continue to build its reputation, differentiate itself from other universities, and do a great job of meeting students’ needs in the 21st century.”

Farouk Ahamed, chair of Laurier’s Board of Governors, said: "On behalf of the Board of Governors I am delighted to welcome Michael Lee-Chin as our next chancellor. We look forward to working closely with Michael as Laurier celebrates its centennial and embarks on a number of exciting initiatives over the coming years."

One of Canada’s most successful entrepreneurs, Lee-Chin has frequently been included on Forbes magazine’s annual list of billionaires. As a philanthropist, he has contributed to a wide range of causes, including his 2003 donation of $30 million to the Royal Ontario Museum for its renovation by architect Daniel Libeskind.

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