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Sunday, July 25, 2021

Robert Grey to serve as interim UC provost

University of California President Mark Yudof announced last week that former UC Davis administrator Robert Grey will serve as interim provost for the UC system while the search for a permanent replacement continues.

Grey will take office in September to replace current UC Provost Wyatt R. Hume, who announced his intention to step down earlier this summer.

“I decided late last year that I would step down once a new president was appointed,” Hume said in an e-mail interview. “It is best for a new president to be able to choose their own team, most particularly their deputy, which in UC is the provost.”

Grey, who is the current chancellor at UC Riverside, has served as a member of the UC faculty since 1967 and has spent a large part of that time at UC Davis, where he served as dean of the division of biological sciences from 1985 to 1993 and executive vice chancellor from 1993 to 2001.

President Yudof said it was Grey’s experience and knowledge of the UC system that made him a prime candidate to serve as Hume’s temporary replacement.

“I was delighted that Bob Grey accepted my offer to serve as interim provost because he has such a distinguished history of leadership in the UC system, largely at UC Davis but also more recently as acting chancellor of UC Riverside,” Yudof said. “He knows the system well, he understands the central role of shared governance with the faculty, and he will lend a steady hand during this transitional period.”

Outgoing provost Hume said he believes Grey was a good choice for his replacement.

“I know Dr. Grey very well and admire him enormously,” he said. “He is superbly qualified.… I cannot think of anyone who would do it better.”

UC assembled an advisory committee earlier this summer to aid in the search for a new permanent provost.

“I expect the search for a permanent provost to be completed within the next few months,” Yudof said. “I intend to find a candidate who brings thorough knowledge of the UC system, a commitment to academic excellence and student success, and a priority on working effectively with the Academic Senate in shared governance of the institution.”

Yudof said that he hopes to find a provost that can properly fill the shoes of Hume, who oversaw several initiatives while in office, including a 10 percent budget reduction for the office of the president.

“[Hume] provided energetic leadership for the system during a difficult period of change,” he said. “I wish him the very best as he pursues new adventures.”

Hume, who is a native of Australia, will become the new provost for the Arab Emirates University, one of the top research institutions in the Persian Gulf, according to its website.

“UAEU is already a very good university and is very interested in adding strength to its programs in ways that are very appealing to me,” Hume said. “I have become very interested in the challenge and the opportunity to contribute to higher education in a very dynamic and progressive part of the world.”

 

ERICA LEE can be reached at campus@californiaaggie.com.

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