Dennis Assanis will step down from his positions as the provost, senior vice president for academic affairs and vice president of Brookhaven affairs at Stony Brook University to become the next president of the University of Delaware, both universities announced Wednesday.
The UD board of trustees elected Assanis at its meeting on Wednesday with a unanimous vote. The previous UD president, Patrick Harker, resigned in March to become president and CEO of the Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia.
“UD is an amazing institution known for the quality of its students and the achievements of its faculty and staff,” Assanis said in a UD news release. “In our quest to fulfill our mission of cultivating learning, developing knowledge and fostering the free exchange of ideas, we will reaffirm our commitment to providing access to excellence in education, scholarly research and creative performances.”
As the provost of Stony Brook University, a position he has held since 2011, Assanis served as the chief academic officer and supervised the deans and directors of all the colleges, schools, centers, institutes and libraries on the West Campus.
Assanis’ predecessor as provost, Eric Kaler, also became the president of another university after resigning. Kaler stepped down as provost in July 2011 when he was appointed president of the University of Minnesota.
“On behalf of Stony Brook University, I extend sincere congratulations to Provost Assanis; we are grateful for his thoughtful and strategic leadership, and for all he has accomplished during his time here,” said Stony Brook University President Samuel L. Stanley, Jr. in the UD news release. “The University of Delaware is fortunate to have successfully recruited a leader with Dennis’ capabilities, and I have no doubt that he will lead UD to continued success.”
Before coming to Stony Brook, Assanis taught engineering at the University of Michigan beginning in 1994. He started teaching as a professor at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign in 1985.
Stony Brook will immediately launch a national search for a new provost, senior vice president for academic affairs and vice president for Brookhaven affairs, Stanley said in an email to the Stony Brook campus community. Nancy Targett—the dean of UD’s College of Earth, Ocean and Environment—will serve as UD’s acting president until Assanis takes office on July 1, 2016.