UMN Provost Karen Hanson to step down from role this year

Hanson, who has been with the University of Minnesota for nearly seven years, will continue to serve in her position for another five months.

Provost Karen Hanson listens during a Board of Regents meeting at McNamara Alumni Center on Thursday, Feb. 8. 

Ellen Schmidt

Provost Karen Hanson listens during a Board of Regents meeting at McNamara Alumni Center on Thursday, Feb. 8. 

Helen Sabrowsky

University of Minnesota’s Executive Vice President and Provost Karen Hanson will step down from her position in December, according to a University-wide statement sent on Tuesday afternoon from Hanson.  

She cited the “demands” of the job and personal and family “considerations” as reasons for stepping down. Adding, she’s considered stepping aside for over a year. 

Hanson, who has held this 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 things.

Over the next five months, Hanson said she will continue overseeing several initiatives, including the reorganization of the Academic Health Center, child care planning for the Twin Cities campus and the beginning of the University’s systemwide strategic plan. 

She said she plans to begin a single-semester leave in January, followed by a phased retirement during which Hanson will continue working on implementing the strategic plan on the Twin Cities campus.

Hanson said her departure is not related to University President Eric Kaler’s decision to step down in June 2019, which he announced last month. 

This fall, Kaler will name an interim executive vice president and provost who will assist during the presidential search process and transition.