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Wilfrid Laurier University announces new president
Dr. Max Blouw to lead Laurier beginning September 2007
Dec 19/06| For Immediate Release
Beverly Harris, Chair, Wilfrid Laurier University Board of Governors, (519) 570-0460
Jacqui Tam, Director
WATERLOO – Max Blouw, a key member of the senior administrative team who has been instrumental in the success story that is the University of Northern British Columbia (UNBC), has been named the next president of Wilfrid Laurier University.
The appointment, which was recommended by the university senate and approved by the board of governors at special meetings late last week, was announced today to the broader Laurier community by board of governors chair, Beverly Harris.
“This is a momentous day for Laurier,” Harris said. “Dr. Blouw was the unanimous choice of the selection committee, and we are totally confident that under his leadership, Laurier will be able to take advantage of the many opportunities open to us as we approach and celebrate our centenary in 2011.”
Blouw will complete his second term as vice president of research at the UNBC at the end of June and will begin a five-year term at Laurier on September 1, 2007.
“Laurier has grown vigorously over the past decade under Dr. Bob Rosehart’s outstanding leadership,” Blouw said. “The university is positioned to finish its first century of operations as a very successful undergraduate institution. I believe it will enter a new century of operations as a comprehensive university with a clearly defined identity and niche among the other Ontario and Canadian universities.”
Blouw said Laurier will build an even stronger reputation for excellence in undergraduate education while “growing national and international reputation in strategically identified areas of faculty and graduate student scholarship.”
“I am very honored to have been selected to lead the university into this exciting phase, and my wife and I are eagerly looking forward to living in the heartland of Canada.” Blouw concluded.
Rosehart, whose significant contributions to Laurier include a completely revitalized Waterloo campus and new campuses in Brantford and Kitchener, said, “I’m extremely proud of what we’ve accomplished over the last decade, and believe that Dr. Blouw’s experience at UNBC prepares him well for the challenges and exciting times he will face here.”
Born in Holland in 1951, Blouw moved to Canada in 1957 and became a Canadian citizen in 1963. He has a bachelor of science and a master of science in zoology from the University of Manitoba (1972 and 1977 respectively) and a PhD in biology from the University of New Brunswick (1982).
He joined UNBC in 1995 as a professor of biology, and became associate vice president and dean of graduate studies in 1997. In 2000, he was named to his current role.
“UNBC is a relatively young institution,” Harris said, “and Dr. Blouw is widely acknowledged as an architect of many of the university’s new initiatives. Under his leadership, UNBC has risen to be consistently first or second among small universities in funding support from the Social Sciences & Humanities Research Council. He also receives much of the credit for the extremely impressive $40 million endowment built at UNBC in a few short years.”
Blouw’s significant influence and involvement in British Columbia is matched by his presence on the federal sphere. He is a long-standing member of the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada, and has chaired many of its key committees. He was recently appointed to a second term as the Chair of the University Advisory Group to Industry Canada, and just this past week was invited to sit on the adjudication panel for the Ontario Premier’s Discovery Awards, which recognize research excellence of the province’s finest senior researchers.