Universities Canada board director
Dr. Robert Summerby-Murray was named the 34th president of Saint Mary’s University in July 2015.
Originally from New Zealand, Dr. Summerby-Murray came to Canada in 1986 to complete his PhD at the University of Toronto. He’s since established a distinguished academic career that includes 18 years at Mount Allison University, where he served for seven years as dean of social sciences, and five years at Dalhousie University as dean of arts and social sciences.
An accomplished educator, Dr. Summerby-Murray received the AAU Distinguished Teacher Award in 2000 and was named a 3M National Teaching Fellow in 2006. He has received various SSHRC funding, including for his work on industrial heritage in Maritime Canada.
Since joining Saint Mary’s, Dr. Summerby-Murray has led a number of change processes with the goal of enhancing the opportunities and strengths of Saint Mary’s. The university’s new institutional strategic plan focuses on value and values, internationalization, discovery and innovation, and financial sustainability. Within the discussion of Value and Values is a focus on Aboriginal education. Dr. Summerby-Murray draws on his experience in New Zealand as the university moves forward to implement the recommendations of an internal President’s Taskforce on Aboriginal Education, and reflecting the results of the Truth & Reconciliation Commission.
Dr. Summerby-Murray is a director on the board of Universities Canada.