New members bolster Senior Leadership Team and President's Cabinet

New members bolster Senior Leadership Team and President's Cabinet

By Executive Office of the President
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The President's Cabinet and the Senior Leadership Team have new members.
The President's Cabinet and the Senior Leadership Team have new members.
Recent additions to the Senior Leadership Team include Ivy Banks (top row), Levi Esquerra (second row) and Marla Franco (third row).
Recent additions to the Senior Leadership Team include Ivy Banks (top row), Levi Esquerra (second row) and Marla Franco (third row).
The Senior Leadership Team has 28 members and the President's Cabinet has 32.
The Senior Leadership Team has 28 members and the President's Cabinet has 32.
Other additions to the Senior Leadership Team are Jessica Summers (top row) and Craig Wilson (bottom row).
Other additions to the Senior Leadership Team are Jessica Summers (top row) and Craig Wilson (bottom row).

Even as the campus community tackles the challenges brought by COVID-19, critical initiatives underway before the pandemic have continued to move forward. One such effort has heightened significance in the context of the pandemic: expanding and diversifying University leadership groups to help ensure a full range of perspectives and voices to inform and guide our decision-making.

You may have already noticed some of these changes on the president's website, particularly the composition of the Senior Leadership Team and the President's Cabinet as compared with last year at this time.

Starting in early 2020, several leaders who already were serving the University in vital roles were invited to join the Senior Leadership Team, such as Faculty Chair Jessica Summers, a professor in the College of Education, and others serving as leaders on strategic and values-based priorities, such as Marla Franco, assistant vice provost for Hispanic-Serving Institution initiatives. More recent additions are Levi Esquerra, our first-ever senior vice president for Native American advancement and tribal engagement, Ivy Banks, associate vice provost for diversity and inclusion, and Craig Wilson, vice provost for online and distance education.

With senior executives and leaders in critical areas of responsibility, along with those who represent key constituencies on campus, SLT continues to be a place for high-level discussion and discernment, where emerging issues can be discussed and better understood and the strategic decisions related to them can be made.

Several other leaders have been invited to join the President's Cabinet, which remains an important group rooted in shared governance principles. The additions reflect the need for members of the faculty and staff with deep knowledge of the University of Arizona and its mission to serve as a sounding board and point of counsel on vital issues and concerns across the University. President Robert C. Robbins depends on Cabinet members to bring their voices to the fore as we implement University policy and pursue our goals.

The expansion of the Senior Leadership Team and the President's Cabinet brings varied perspectives to the processes of institutional priority-setting and will further ensure thorough deliberation by representatives across campus on matters that affect us all. In addition to their extensive leadership experience, the new members of these leadership bodies have shown incredible dedication to the University of Arizona.

"I am confident this broad leadership team can continue to improve the University together by building on our successes, learning from one another, and expanding our capacity to collaborate," Robbins said.

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