Garnett Stokes appointed interim chancellor, Gary Ward appointed interim vice chancellor for student affairs

Stokes will serve as interim chancellor until a permanent chancellor is hired.
Maneater File Photo

UM System President Mun Choi announced Garnett Stokes as the new interim chancellor in an email to students, staff and faculty this morning. Stokes will replace interim chancellor Hank Foley and will begin her term May 3.

Stokes, former executive vice chancellor for academic affairs and provost, joined the MU staff in February 2015. In her time as provost, she has hired eight of the thirteen deans on campus, according to Choi’s email. The Office of Civil Rights and Title IX was also established under her direction.

“I look forward to working closely with President Choi as we prepare the campus for a new chancellor,” Stokes said. “We have several important issues to tackle in the coming months, including final budget decisions, programmatic reviews and preparation for our incoming freshman class.”

Stokes will be replacing Foley, who was appointed interim chancellor in November 2015 following the resignation of R. Bowen Loftin, who stepped down after receiving criticism for responses to protests put on by social justice groups on campus.

Foley, who previously expressed interest in serving as chancellor permanently, announced in March that he will be leaving MU to become the president of the New York Institute of Technology. His term will begin June 1.

Additionally, Gary Ward was appointed as the interim vice chancellor for student affairs, though he will also serve in his current position as the vice chancellor of operations. Ward will begin his term in the new position on May 8.

“[Ward] will work closely with senior university leaders and external specialists to reimagine the comprehensive student experience for the best living and learning outcomes, with an emphasis on developing student-first principles,” Choi said in this morning’s email.

Ward will be replacing Cathy Scroggs, who is retiring this year after 32 years at MU; she has served in the vice chancellor position since 2003. Scroggs will remain a special advisor to Choi until her July 2017 retirement.

“I’m honored to be able to work with a group that has a history of loving and serving students,” Ward said. “We have an opportunity to review the Division of Student Affairs and be at the forefront of student success in the United States.”

Edited by Zia Kelly |

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