Maurie McInnis Has Been Named the First Woman President of Yale University

Maurie McInnis has been named president of Yale University, making her the university’s first permanent woman president. She will assume her presidency on July 1, succeeding current president Peter Salovey, who will return to the faculty full-time after 11 years at the helm of the Ivy League school.

Yale enrolls roughly 6,600 undergraduate and 8,100 graduate students. Women represent about 51 percent of the undergraduate student body.

Dr. McInnis has three decades of experience in higher education leadership. She has been serving as president of Stony Brook University in New York. Prior to her current presidential appointment in 2020, she served as executive vice president and provost at the University of Texas for four years. She previously spent two decades with the University of Virginia, where she held roles such as director of American studies, associate dean for undergradaute academic programs in the College and Graduate School of Arts and Sciences, and vice provost for academic affairs.

In addition to her robust administrative background, Dr. McInnis is a scholar of art, history, and African American studies, having served in various teaching appointments throughout her career. She has conducted extensive research on the politics of art and slavery. Her academic endeavors led her to publishing numerous scholarly works, including Slaves Waiting for Sale: Abolitionist Art and the American Slave Trade (University of Chicago Press, 2011) and In Pursuit of Refinement: Charlestonians Abroad, 1740-1860 (University of South Carolina Press, 1999).

Outside of her current appointments, Dr. McInnis is a member of several academic and professional organizations. She currently serves as a trustee of the Yale Corporation, chair of the Commission on Economic and Community Engagement in the Association of Public and Land-Grant Universities, board member of the Association of American Universities, and founding chair of the New York Climate Exchange.

In a video message to the Yale community following her appointment, Dr. McInnis said, “I’m filled with gratitude as I step into the role to lead this university, knowing firsthand the opportunity for learning it provides to students and the impact it has on millions of people around the world through life-changing scholarship and research. I have no doubt that there are many exciting times ahead for all of us, and many challenges. Through it all, I will seek the input of the community and urge all of us to listen with empathy and compassion for the experiences of others. Most importantly, I will encourage us to ask ourselves what change we wish to see in the world and how might we best accomplish that.”

Dr. McInnis is a graduate of the University of Virginia, where she majored in art history. She received two master’s degrees and a Ph.D. in the history of art from Yale University.

Filed Under: LeadershipMilestonesNews


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