The University of Hawaiʻi Board of Regents has approved the appointment of UH President David Lassner as the interim chancellor of UH Mānoa effective September 1, 2016. UH Mānoa Vice Chancellor for Research Michael Bruno was also appointed interim vice chancellor for academic affairs. No salary increase was recommended for either individual to assume these additional responsibilities.
“I absolutely know how important UH Mānoa is and I am completely committed to the faculty, students and staff of the campus,” said Lassner after the August 18 BOR meeting where the appointments were approved. He also stressed that the UH president and the UH Mānoa are two separate jobs.
“I made this recommendation only in the interest of advancing UH Mānoa as quickly as possible on some critical priorities,” said Lassner. “It will then be handed off to the permanent chancellor. The search committee is hard at work, and I am very hopeful that we will have a new chancellor for UH Mānoa ideally for the start of the spring semester.”
Bruno said that he is looking forward to working with Lassner to move the Mānoa campus to even greater heights.
“I really very much am looking forward to taking these two roles because I look at it as an opportunity to integrate the research and teaching activities here at the university,” said Bruno. “I believe that world class learning cannot occur without world class research.”
After two years of service as interim chancellor, Robert Bley-Vroman declined to be considered for reappointment. Current Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs Reed Dasenbrock also announced last month his decision to step down from his administrative position. Both Bley-Vroman and Dasenbrock will return to the faculty.
Search for new UH Mānoa chancellor continues
The search for the next UH Mānoa chancellor began in spring 2016 with applications screened by the search advisory committee during the summer. Campus visits by the final candidates are planned for early in the fall semester. Faculty, students, staff and other stakeholders are encouraged to meet the finalists and provide feedback. Lassner plans to submit a recommendation to the BOR during the fall semester for a new chancellor, who will hopefully begin in time for the spring 2017 semester.
“With finances largely stabilized, this is the perfect time for Mānoa to move forward as one of the world’s great research universities.” said Lassner. “Faculty, administrators, staff, students and regents are all anxious for improvement and change, and I am excited about the opportunity to work together with the campus community on an active agenda for excellence that will be turned over to the new chancellor next spring.”
- Related: Recommendation for UH Mānoa transitional leadership made to Board of Regents, August 11, 2016
Once the new chancellor starts, Lassner will return to service as UH System president only. The new chancellor will work with the campus to determine continuing academic leadership.