Acadia Board of Governors appoints Ray Ivany Interim President

President Emeritus Ray Ivany will take the helm of Acadia University on an interim appointment on July 1, 2023. He will be joined by former CFO and VP of Finance and Administration Darrell Youden

The Board of Governors at Acadia University has chosen Ray Ivany, a former president of the institution, to serve as the Interim President and Vice-Chancellor, effective July 1, 2023. This decision comes after Dr. Peter Ricketts, the current president, announced his departure last summer and concludes his six-year term on June 30, 2023.

“We are thankful for Dr. Ricketts’ leadership during the past six years and excited about the progress that has been achieved. That is why it is particularly fortunate to have President Emeritus Ray Ivany return to Acadia to ensure the University’s forward momentum,” said Henry Demone, Chair of Acadia’s Board of Governors.

Ivany is a respected and charismatic leader, says Demone, adding that his willingness to assist with the leadership transition at Acadia is highly appreciated.

From 2009 to 2017, Ivany served as President and Vice-Chancellor of Acadia University, bringing over 25 years of experience in post-secondary leadership. Before this, he had served two terms as President and CEO of Nova Scotia Community College. In 2012, he chaired the Nova Scotia Commission on Building our New Economy, which produced the influential report "Now or Never: An Urgent Call to Action for Nova Scotians."

Ivany, who resides in Wolfville, is pleased to return to the campus.

“Acadia will always have a special place in my heart, and I am honoured to be asked to serve the University in this interim role,” said Ivany. “I believe strongly that Acadia University has an incredibly powerful educational model and deserves its longstanding reputation as one of Canada’s best universities. I look forward to working with faculty, staff, students, and alumni to strengthen the University before our 17th President and Vice-Chancellor arrives.”

Ivany has received numerous awards, including being named to Maclean’s magazine’s Honour Roll of Ten Canadians Who Made a Difference, Canada’s Most Admired CEO in the Public Sector, Person of the Year by the Halifax Chamber of Commerce, and Atlantic Business Magazine’s Top 50 CEO Hall of Fame. Ivany received the Order of Nova Scotia in 2017 and the Order of Canada in 2020.

His achievements have also been acknowledged by Acadia University, where he received the prestigious Arthur L. Irving Medal of Commitment and was named an Honorary Alumnus and President Emeritus.

Joining Ivany at Acadia will be Darrell Youden, who will take over as Interim Vice-President, Finance and Administration and Chief Financial Officer on July 1, 2023. Youden served in that capacity at Acadia from 2010 until 2016 alongside Ivany. He steps in for Chris Callbeck, who is retiring from the position he has held since 2016.

Before joining Acadia, Youden was Senior Executive Director of Corporate Services for the Nova Scotia Department of Education. His work experience includes senior financial, operations, and human resource management positions with the Halifax County-Bedford District School Board and Nova Scotia Housing and Consumer Affairs. Between 1979 and 1990, Mr. Youden was a senior manager with Grant Thornton, providing management consulting and client services.

Youden will serve Acadia until a successful candidate begins their term.


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