New Chair and members of ACU Council appointed

New Chair and members of ACU Council appointed

Published on 11 September 2017

The ACU is pleased to announce the appointment of a new Chair of ACU Council, as well as nine new members of Council, who will serve for a period of three years until 2019.

Professor Amit Chakma, President and Vice-Chancellor of Western University in Canada, was appointed as Chair of Council following a ballot. He has served as a member of the ACU Council since 2014.

Professor Cheryl de la Rey, Vice-Chancellor of University of Pretoria in South Africa, remains as Vice-Chair while Professor Idris Rai, Vice-Chancellor of the State University of Zanzibar in Tanzania and former elected member of Council, was co-opted as Honorary Treasurer.

Professor Jan Thomas, Vice-Chancellor of Massey University in New Zealand and former Chair of Council 2015-2017, was co-opted as member of Council.

Nine executive heads were appointed as new members of the ACU Council: Professor Wim de Villiers from Stellenbosch University in South Africa, Professor Nigel Healey from Fiji National University, Professor Dhanjay Jhurry from the University of Mauritius, Professor Mehraj-Ud Din Mir from Central University of Kashmir in India, Professor Abel Idowu Olayinka from University of Ibadan in Nigeria, Professor Nirmala Rao from the Asian University for Women in Bangladesh, Professor Colin Riordan from the Cardiff University in the UK, Professor Gamini Senanayake from the University of Ruhuna in Sri Lanka, and Professor Gabriel Ayum Teye from The University for Development Studies in Ghana.

Three executive heads are continuing members in their first term of office: Engr Ahmed Farooq Bazai from Balochistan University of Information Technology, Engineering and Management Sciences in Pakistan, Professor Stuart Corbridge from Durham University in the UK, and Professor Deep Saini from the University of Canberra in Australia.

And finally, Professor Paul Boyle from the University of Leicester in the UK and Professor Ranbir Singh from the National Law University in Delhi, India, were re-elected to serve a second term of office.

Dr Joanna Newman, Chief Executive and Secretary General of the ACU said: "I would like to thank all those Council members who are standing down for the hardwork and dedication over the last few years - especially our outgoing Chair, Professor Jan Thomas (vice-chancellor, Massey University, New Zealand), who has excelled in the role and helped steer the ACU's strategic direction. I am looking forward to formally welcoming all members of Council, both new and returning, when they next meet in London in November 2017, including our new Chair, Professor Amit Chakma (vice-chancellor, Western University, Canada)."

The Council is the ACU's governing body, made up of an elected group of university vice-chancellors who represent member institutions in their constituencies. The Council is collectively responsible for overseeing the ACU's activities and determining its future direction, including its mission and strategic vision, long-term business plans, and annual budgets. The ACU Council meets at least twice a year, with each member serving a term of three years. 

Find out more about the ACU Council, its role and purpose here.