Karen Hanson to remain executive vice president and provost after leave of absence

Hanson will be on leave from January to March 2019, and will resume her role on April 1.

Provost Karen Hanson addresses the opening of the We Are Water exhibit on Friday, Sept. 12, at the Institute on the Environment.

Jack Rodgers

Provost Karen Hanson addresses the opening of the “We Are Water” exhibit on Friday, Sept. 12, at the Institute on the Environment.

by Helen Sabrowsky

Straying from previous announcement that she would leave her role in December, University of Minnesota Executive Vice President and Provost Karen Hanson will take a leave of absence from January to March and return full-time on April 1, according to a statement sent to University faculty from President Eric Kaler Friday. 

Hanson will step down when the next University president names a new chief academic officer. Vice Provost and Dean of Undergraduate Education Robert McMaster will serve as acting executive vice president and provost during Hanson’s leave, according to the statement.

In the statement, Kaler said the new plan will provide stability and continuity during the presidential transition, while also allowing Hanson to take time off for personal and family reasons. In July, Kaler announced that we would resign as president in July 2019, one year before his contract was set to expire.  

Hanson will continue to work on several initiatives, including child care planning for the Twin Cities campus, restructuring the Academic Health Center, enhancing systemwide enrollment coordination and a strategic framework for online education, Kaler said in the statement. 

Hanson, who has held the position for almost seven years, is responsible for overseeing the University’s academics, as well as its educational and research missions. She is also involved in the University’s budget process and capital planning, among other responsibilities.

McMaster has served in his current role for 11 years and previously served as chair of the Department of Geography and as an associate dean for budget and planning in the College of Liberal Arts, according to the statement.