Janet Napolitano, U.S. Secretary of Homeland Security and former Arizona governor, has been nominated for the position of 20th president of the University of California. If elected, Napolitano would become the first female president to lead the UC as well as the first leading political figure to take the helm in a position traditionally filled by academics.
According to the Daily Bruin, Napolitano received a unanimous vote from the special UC search committee designated to appoint the next president.
Napolitano will succeed former UC president Mark G. Yudof, who announced his resignation last August.
According to the LA Times, President Barack Obama wishes Napolatino well on her new position, as well as thanked her for many years of service, including helping secure U.S. borders and “taking steps to make our immigration system fairer and more consistent with our values.”
Kathryn Lybarger, president of the UC’s largest union, AFSCME 3299, is hopeful that the former governor will be able to tackle the many problems facing the UC today.
“While UC staff, students and patients were largely excluded from the secretive process that led to Secretary Janet Napolitano’s appointment, we appreciate her years of public service and congratulate her on becoming the next President of the University of California,” Lybarger said in a statement.
— Adam Khan