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Lakehead University Appoints New President

(February 10, 2010 - Thunder Bay, ON) Brian J.R. Stevenson, current Provost
and Vice-President Academic at the University of Winnipeg, will become Lakehead University's sixth President and Vice-Chancellor on August 1, 2010, following the retirement of current President Dr. Frederick Gilbert on July 31, 2010.

Dr. Brian Stevenson, Incoming President

Stevenson, who has a stellar record of leadership in academia and government, was unanimously selected by Lakehead University's Board of Governors following an
extensive international search that drew many talented and accomplished academic
leaders, states Kevin Cleghorn, Chair of Lakehead's Board of Governors.

The appointment is made after a year-long search conducted by a diverse Presidential Search Committee composed of board members, alumni, faculty, students, senators, administration, and aboriginal representation. "After intense discussion the search committee agreed that the right candidate would infuse our institution with a collegial, open, student-centred approach while continuing to promote a vigorous research climate that looks beyond the University to forge partnerships and joint ventures locally, nationally, and globally," says Cleghorn. "The Board concurred that Brian Stevenson brings all these attributes to the table and is well equipped to move Lakehead University forward with experience, purpose, and vision."

Past Chair of the Board of Governors, Don Campbell, observes that, "Among the candidates, Brian Stevenson stood out for his significant academic achievements, his solid background in complex issues management in both academic and government spheres, and his straightforward approach to diagnosing and streamlining many aspects of university life. His current position at the University of Winnipeg makes him no stranger to the significant budgetary and enrollment challenges and opportunities faced by post-secondary institutions everywhere."

Stevenson has extensive background in international affairs, including positions as Senior Policy Advisor in Ottawa to the Ministers of Foreign Affairs and International Trade. Along with his academic credentials from the University of Victoria and Queen's University and more than a decade of senior administrative responsibilities at both the University of Alberta and University of Winnipeg, Brian Stevenson also uniquely brings to his new position a global outlook that is expected to serve Lakehead University well into the next decade and beyond.

Brian Stevenson has excellent memories of his undergraduate days at the relatively small campus of the University of Victoria. The close personal connections students make at smaller universities are, he believes, crucial to creating the best kind of educational environment. He is passionate about interacting with people on campus and is excited about building strong and lasting relationships in an atmosphere of openness, consultation, and cooperation. Stevenson's extensive background in external relations working with governments, business, granting agencies, alumni, donors, and other stakeholders, will ensure that all parties feel they have a seat at his table.

Stevenson, born in Victoria, B.C., spent his early years in Mexico and the United States but returned to B.C. to attend the University of Victoria where he graduated with an HBA in Political Science, and an MA focused on Public Policy. He received his PhD in Political Studies from Queen's University before returning to Mexico to teach at the prestigious Instituto Tecnológico Autónomo de México (ITAM). From there he was appointed as Visiting Imperial Oil/Royal Bank Professor of International Business at the University of Alberta, left to work as Senior Policy Advisor in Ottawa to the Ministers of Foreign Affairs
and International Trade, then returned to the University of Alberta as Vice-Provost and Associate Vice-President (International) before taking leave to work in Washington D.C. for the Organization of American States and later as a Public Policy Scholar at the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars.

Brian Stevenson, his wife, Judy Davies, and their children, Cecilia and Isabel, are very pleased to be moving to Thunder Bay where they have relatives and will be closer to family. 

Read Dr. Stevenson's bio to learn more about him.  


Media Interviews
For further information or to interview Dr. Stevenson, and Chair of the Board of Governors Kevin Cleghorn, please contact Communications Officer Heather Scott at 807-343-8177, 807-472-9113, or, or Director of Communications Eleanor Abaya at 807.343-8372, or

About Lakehead
Lakehead is a comprehensive university with a reputation for innovative programs and cutting-edge research. Named Canada's value-added university by Maclean's for five years, Lakehead has a campus in Thunder Bay, and Orillia, Ontario, where a permanent LEED Platinum campus is under construction. With over 8,000 students and 2,250 faculty and staff, Lakehead is home to the west campus of the Northern Ontario School of Medicine. In 2006, Research Infosource Inc. named Lakehead University Canada's Research University of the Year in the undergraduate category. For more information on Lakehead University, visit

Last updated June 22, 2010

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