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Queen’s Chancellor has term extended additional year

Jim Leech to serve as Chancellor until June 2021.

Jim Leech, Queen's University Chancellor
Jim Leech has served as Queen’s University Chancellor since 2014.

Queen’s University Council members have voted to extend the current term of appointment of Chancellor Jim Leech for an additional 12 months to June 30, 2021. Acting on a recommendation from the University Council Executive Committee, Councilors agreed that Chancellor Leech’s extension would ensure continuity and support for the incoming Principal, Patrick Deane.

“I’m honoured that the University Council has voted to extend my term for an additional year,” says Chancellor Leech. “I look forward to contributing in any way I can to the smooth transition of leadership, as Daniel Woolf completes his exceptional tenure as Principal and Vice-Chancellor and we welcome Principal Designate Deane back into the Queen’s community.”

The Chancellor is the university’s highest officer and serves as ceremonial head of the school, as well as the University Council chairperson and an ex-officio member of the Board of Trustees and its committees. Chancellor Leech first assumed his role in July 2014, making him the 14th person to occupy the Chancellorship since its creation over 140 years ago. He has a long history of exemplary service in the position, having presided over countless convocations and conferred many degrees, chaired important governance committees, and served as an outspoken ambassador for the school.

“It has been a great pleasure to work alongside Jim over the last five years, as his energy, expertise, and enduring commitment to the university has strengthened and inspired the Queen’s community,” says Daniel Woolf, Principal and Vice-Chancellor. “He is an invaluable champion and a steady hand, and I am pleased that he has agreed to stay and support Dr. Deane as he transitions into his role as Principal.”

Outside of Queen’s, Chancellor Leech most recently retired as President and CEO of the Ontario Teachers’ Pension Plan – one of the world’s largest pension plans – and previously led Unicorp Canada Corporation, and Union Energy Inc. He is involved in a number of charitable causes, including as chair of the board of the Mastercard Foundation, and received the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee Medal for his involvement with the True Patriot Love Foundation, which supports Canadian military families. In 2014, he was also invested as a Member of the Order of Canada.

The University Council unanimously ratified Chancellor Leech’s term extension on Thursday, April 25 during a special meeting of Council members.