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President’s announcement: Senior leadership appointments

December 12, 2013 — 

I am pleased to announce three senior leadership appointments at the University of Manitoba, approved on December 10, 2013 by the Board of Governors.

Dr. Digvir Jayas has been reappointed as Vice-President (research and international) effective July 1, 2014, for a five-year term ending June 30, 2019.

Leah Janzen has been appointed Associate Vice-President (outreach and community engagement) in External Relations.

Stephanie Levene has been appointed Associate Vice-President (donor relations) in External Relations.

All three outstanding individuals are alumni of the University of Manitoba.

Dr. Jayas has served the University of Manitoba with distinction as Vice-President (Research and International) since 2009, leading a research enterprise that annually attracts almost $160 million in sponsored research income. Prior to assuming his role as Vice-President (Research), Dr. Jayas served as Associate Vice-President (Research) for eight years, following terms as Associate Dean (Research) in the Faculty of Agricultural and Food Sciences, Department Head of Biosystems Engineering and Interim Director of the Richardson Centre for Functional Foods and Nutraceuticals. He is a Registered Professional Engineer, a Registered Professional Agrologist, a Distinguished Professor and has held a Canada Research Chair in Stored-Grain Ecosystems.

The recipient of numerous national and international awards and honours, Dr. Jayas was recently elected as a Foreign Fellow of the National Academy of Sciences, India, for his contributions to global grain preservation through research and innovation.

During his first term as Vice-President (Research and International), Dr. Jayas implemented a number of new initiatives of significant strategic benefit, such as the Transformational Partnerships program, the Graduate Enhancement of Tri-Council Stipends (GETS) program in collaboration with the Faculty of Graduate Studies , strategic support to researchers and faculties to develop their research initiatives and proposals, enhanced start-up support for new academic hires, and bridge funding and research facilitators. He also launched the Undergraduate Research Awards, the only program of its kind in North America, to support undergraduate students being mentored by researchers in all disciplines across the campus, with more than 150 students to date receiving support. Currently, Dr. Jayas is leading the development of an Internationalization Strategy for the University of Manitoba and identifying the Signature Research Areas.

Newly appointed Associate Vice-Presidents Leah Janzen and Stephanie Levene will work with Vice-President (External) John Kearsey and the entire External Relations team to create a dynamic culture of advancement and philanthropy that supports the University of Manitoba’s mission and goals to build bigger futures for our students, faculty, staff and the community.

As Associate Vice-President (Outreach and Engagement), Leah Janzen will provide vision, strategic direction and leadership to all University of Manitoba outreach and community engagement activities, developing meaningful and productive relationships with alumni, stakeholders and key partners. Her portfolio will include the Marketing Communications Office, Alumni Relations and Government and Community Engagement.

In 2012, Leah Janzen became Director, Office of the Vice President (External), where she has played a significant leadership role in enhancing integration within External Relations, managing critical issues and telling the unique story of the University of Manitoba. Previously, she served as Associate Director, Marketing Communications Office, providing leadership and insight in shaping and implementing our award-winning marketing communications campaigns.

Before joining the University of Manitoba, Leah Janzen enjoyed a successful career as an award-winning journalist with the Winnipeg Free Press.

As Associate Vice-President (Donor Relations), Stephanie Levene will provide strategic direction and leadership to the Donor Relations team and act as the University of Manitoba’s Campaign Director as we embark on the largest transformative fundraising campaign in this province’s history. Her portfolio will include Transformational Philanthropy, Advancement Services, Stewardship, Annual Giving, Planned Giving and Faculty Philanthropy.

Stephanie Levene joined the University of Manitoba in 2011, becoming Director, Campaign and Transformational Giving, in 2012. In this role, she has shown leadership and resourcefulness as she identified strategic fundraising priorities for the University of Manitoba, facilitated the development of a compelling Case for Support, and assembled and guided the team poised to launch our upcoming comprehensive campaign.

Recognized throughout the province as a leader in building outstanding relationships with donors, Stephanie Levene, before coming to the University of Manitoba, had made significant impacts in a number of senior positions at the United Way, most latterly as Director, Campaign and Strategic Initiatives.

I congratulate all three of these outstanding individuals on their appointments, and I ask you all to join with me in celebrating as we continue to build upon our tradition of excellence here at the University of Manitoba.


David T. Barnard, Ph.D., President and Vice-Chancellor

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