Feb. 25, 2022

Feb. 25, 2022

Board of Regents appoints Pat Pitney as System president and adopts five-year strategic goals 

The Board of Regents voted at its Feb. 25 meeting to appoint Pat Pitney as the UA System’s 17th president, removing “interim” from her title. The decision was unanimous, highlighting the board’s recognition of President Pitney’s leadership and contribution to the UA System.

“This is a time for forward momentum and to celebrate our successes, and I’ll note that President Pitney is the first woman to hold the position in the university’s 100-year history. Congratulations, Pat,” said Sheri Buretta, chair of the Board of Regents.

"Thank you for the confidence in me,” Pitney said. “I am truly honored and humbled to lead this great university system. I am dedicated to continuing to build a strong team with shared governance, with our staff, and with each of our universities. I'm excited about our future." 

The board also passed its strategic goals for the UA System, including specific measures that will document progress on each goal. Pitney said the  will serve as the university system’s roadmap for several years. 

The goals, developed with chancellors, leadership teams at each university, and governance include: contributing to 's economic development, skilled workforce and engaged citizenship; fostering academic excellence for student success; promoting diversity, equity and inclusion for students, faculty and staff; growing world-class research; and, operating cost effectively. 

Dr. Pearl Brower, the system’s senior advisor for University of Alaska Native Success, Institutional Diversity and Student Engagement, provided the board an update on the ongoing Native Success Initiative. The initiative addresses how each university will work to implement concrete steps to improve the success of Native students and faculty. 

“The scope of the program across the system is a continuum with a focus on students from the time they are in elementary school through their PhDs. The initiative also will allow us to hire faculty who will serve as role models and provide the assurance to our Native students that they belong,” Pitney said. “We are making huge strides. I’m very pleased that the board challenged us to address this important issue and I am heartened by the ownership and the buy-in across the entire system.”

More information on the Native Success Initiative can be found 

Following a  highlighting cutting-edge research in the field of unmanned aircraft systems – or drones – regents heard from experts in the field of drone innovation in the areas of healthcare, infrastructure and industry support. The presentation and panel discussion  highlighted research and instructional activities at the Center for Unmanned Aircraft System Integration at UAF and applications and instructional programs at UAS.

More on the Did You Know project can be found 

The Board of Regents is an 11-member volunteer board, appointed by the governor and confirmed by the State Legislature. Members serve an 8-year term, with the exception of the student regent who is nominated from their campus and serves a 2-year term. The board was established through the Constitution and is responsible for University of Alaska policy and management through the university president.

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For more information, contact Roberta Graham, associate vice president of public affairs at 907-360-2416 (cell).