Updates for the University of Michigan Leadership Team

Dear colleagues and friends, students, staff and faculty.

To serve at the University of Michigan is to celebrate change and honor tradition. Today, we are observing both with our leadership team.

First, I am honored to offer my most heartfelt congratulations to Dr. Rebecca Cunningham on formally accepting an offer to become the 18th president of the University of Minnesota following a vote of approval by UMN’s Board of Regents.

Dr. Cunningham’s five year appointment begins on July 1. As she turns toward the University of Minnesota, she does so with our most sincere thanks for her dedication to the University of Michigan, our absolute best wishes for her every success, and with our most profound gratitude that she will remain part of the Big Ten family.

At U-M, future leadership in this essential area will be determined in the coming months.

As I announced this fall, I’m also pleased to share that Sally Churchill, who has served as U-M vice president and secretary for nearly two decades will transition to service as special advisor to the vice president and secretary. Her wisdom and insight with the Board of Regents, her relentless energy and her commitment to service have been critical to her success in this essential position at the university.

In her stead, Jon Kinsey, chief of staff in the president’s office, will be taking a new leadership position, but staying within the University of Michigan family. With the formal approval of our Board of Regents later this month, Jon will begin service as the vice president and secretary of the university.

I’m so grateful for Jon’s service, leadership, and sound counsel. His experience at the university, the depth of his relationships across campus and the wisdom he has brought to our conversations have been invaluable. I have complete confidence that he will do an outstanding job for our Board of Regents and our leadership team, and I’m looking forward to continuing to serve with him in his new capacity.

Concurrently, Jay Baer, the chief of staff in the College of Literature, Science, and the Arts, will become the chief of staff in the president’s office and a member of the university’s leadership team.

Please join me in congratulating Rebecca, Sally, Jon and Jay on their new positions, and in thanking them for their exceptional service to the University of Michigan.

Santa J. Ono