Tom Traves named Interim Acting President at Brock University

Early Friday morning, Brock University made the announcement that the new Interim Acting President will be Tom Traves.

According to a press release from Brock, Traves “was unanimously approved by Brock’s Board of Trustees as the person who will lead Brock for the next year while it conducts an executive search for a full-time President.”

Traves’ appointment as Interim President begins tomorrow. He previously served as President of Dalhousie University in Halifax from 1995-2013.

Brock Interim Acting President Tom Traves /

Brock Interim Acting President Tom Traves /

Traves comes to Brock over a month after Wendy Cukier and Brock ‘mutually’ agreed to part ways. Cukier, a Brock graduate, was set to be appointed President on September 1 after the announcement was made in December of 2015. Reasons regarding Cukier and Brock parting ways are still unclear.

All this comes after Jack Lightstone, Brock’s previous President of ten years, retired on June 30, 2015. Brian Hutchings, Vice-President Adminstrations at Brock, was named Interim Acting President until Sept. 1, but his interim role was extended to Sept. 30 after Cukier’s appointment was cancelled.

While Traves doesn’t plan to make any major changes to Brock, he stated that he will focus on a few goals for the upcoming year so that he can do them well and bring success to Brock.

“I plan to spend a lot of time talking to people,” Traves said in a press release from Brock News. “Leaders have to earn their position every day by being trustworthy and building relationships.”

Traves was born in Winnipeg, Manitoba and received a Bachelor of Arts degree in 1970 from the University of Manitoba. He continued his education and later received a Master of Arts degree in 1971 and a PhD in 1976 from York University. He went on to become the Dean of the Faculty of Arts at York University until 1991, after having been both an assistant and associate professor. Before serving as President at Dalhousie, Traves served as an academic Vice President, while also being a professor at the University of New Brunswick.

In 2014, Traves was named a Member of the Order of Canada for all of the tremendous work he did during his appointment at Dalhousie. During Traves’ term, the institution received record-growth in enrolment, the creation of several new faculties and an increase in research funding.

Along with the news of Traves becoming Interim President of Brock, it was also announced that the new Acting Interim Provost is to be Tom Dunk, Brock’s current Dean of the Faculty of Social Sciences. Dunk will also take on the role of  Vice-President Academic.

Tom Dunk /

Tom Dunk /

A new Dean of Social Sciences is planned to be announced shortly.

John Suk, Chair of Brock’s Board of Trustees, stated that the Board chose candidates they believed would best help Brock meet its strategic goals within the next year.

As plenty of faculty such as Scott Henderson, Brock’s Chair of Senate, share their optimism about Traves’ upcoming appointment, saying Traves “brings a fresh set of eyes that will help Brock as we develop our new Strategic Mandate Agreement and future strategic plans”.

Traves is the third Acting President in Brock’s history following Terry Boak (2005-06) and Susan Clark (1996-97). Whoever the university names as the new full-time President will be Brock’s sixth President following: Lightstone (2006-15), David Atkinson (1997-2005), Terry White (1989-96), Alan Earp (1974-88) and James Gibson (1963-73).

Keep checking for further updates on Tom Traves’ appointment at Brock.


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