Here's your chance to become the next chancellor of UBC

It's one of the most prestigious positions anyone can imagine.

Becoming the chancellor of a university implies you've already been incredibly successful. To get the job, you also need to be personally engaging.

Plus you must have sufficient gravitas to engage in high-level discussions with university administrators, as well as with academics from a variety of disciplines.

And when it's a major university like UBC, it's even more demanding because you're sometimes in the public spotlight. This is not a position for those with poor impulse control, like a certain mayor of Toronto.

Do you have what it takes?

Judy Rogers, chair of the UBC Alumni Association board of directors, has issued a call for suggestions for candidates for the next chancellor.

The deadline for submitting names is January 20.

The incumbent, Sarah Morgan-Silvester, completes her second term this year as the ceremonial head of the university.

She's former chair of Port Metro Vancouver and former president and CEO of HSBC Trust Company (Canada).

Under the University Act, the next chancellor is appointed on the recommendation of the UBC Alumni Association and UBC's Council of Senates.

UBC's board has to approve of the choice.

There are nine criteria for the job, including an "outstanding record of leadership", "superb relationship-building skills", and "excellent judgement".

It probably helps if the person has some knowledge about fundraising.

You also have to be a bona fide member of the establishment. No flame-throwing radicals are permitted in this role.

Readers are welcome to offer their recommendations in the comment form below.

Here are my 10 suggestions, which came off the top of my head after reading the criteria:

• Former premier Mike Harcourt

• Former S.U.C.C.E.S.S. president and CEO Tung Chan

• Former UBC president Martha Piper

• Former Assembly of First Nations regional chief Wendy Grant-John

• Brandt Louie, chairman and CEO of H.Y. Louie Company (Louie was chancellor of SFU in the past, but that shouldn't preclude him from taking the same position at UBC.)

• Former premier and former federal health minister Ujjal Dosanjh

• Polygon Homes chairman and noted arts philanthropist Michael Audain

• Supreme Court of Canada chief justice Beverley McLachlin (though her term won't expire as chief justice until 2018, but maybe if she'll take early retirement, she would become the chancellor of the university she once attended)

• David Suzuki (who would reinforce UBC's reputation as an academic centre for research into sustainability)

• Shirley Chan, former chair of Vancity and former chair of UBC board of governors

Comments (3) Add New Comment
Moebius Stripper
How sobering that nowhere in the list of criteria is it even suggested that the successful candidate, who will earn upwards of half a million dollars per year at the province's most prestigious university, have a university degree.
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Charlie Smith
Actually, that's the salary of the president, who serves as vice chancellor.

Nobody will ever be chosen as UBC's president without a university degree.

Charlie Smith
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Moebius Stripper
My mistake on the title. Apparently the role of chancellor is a volunteer position. That certainly makes the job a lot more attractive.

Perhaps no one will be chosen as UBC's president without a university degree, but why not list that as a criterion? Ads for university instructors make it quite clear that people without the relevant degrees will not be considered.
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