George R. Blumenthal inaugurated as UCSC chancellor in campus ceremony

UCSC Chancellor George R. Blumenthal

George R. Blumenthal was inaugurated as the 10th chancellor of the University of California, Santa Cruz, in a public ceremony on UCSC's East Field today (June 6, 2008).

Presided over by Richard C. Blum, chair of the University of California Board of Regents, the 75-minute ceremony featured a traditional academic procession; remarks by UCSC alumni Kent Nagano, Reyna Grande, and Gary Novack; a formal installation by UC President Robert C. Dynes; and Chancellor Blumenthal's inaugural address.

The inauguration was scheduled for June 6 to complement and call attention to the University's annual Student Achievement Awards; the awards ceremony began at 3 p.m. today in the same venue.

Nagano, music director of the Orchestre Symphonique de Montréal and the Bavarian State Opera; Grande, author of Across a Hundred Mountains and the 2007 American Book Award winner; and Novack, founder of the consulting company Pharmalogic Development, offered keynote addresses. Each described how their UCSC education placed them on paths to make important contributions to society.

Blumenthal's inaugural address highlighted UCSC's distinctiveness as a major teaching and research university and outlined his vision for the campus.

Others who participated in the inaugural ceremony included John Laird, a UCSC alumnus who represents Santa Cruz and the rest of the 27th District in California's Assembly; Ryan Coonerty, mayor of the City of Santa Cruz; Gordon Ringold, an alumnus and Silicon Valley entrepreneur who serves as president of the UCSC Foundation; Larry Vanderhoef, chancellor of UC Davis; and Michael Brown, chair of the UC Academic Senate.

Approximately 1,000 guests attended the public ceremony, which was held in a temporary pavilion on East Field. The Student Achievement Awards ceremony and several commencements the following weekend will also take place there.

The ceremony will also be webcast during the weekend of June 7-8 on the UCSC home page.

Blumenthal, a distinguished professor of astronomy and astrophysics, came to UCSC as a faculty member in 1972. A former chair of the UC systemwide and UCSC Academic Senate, Blumenthal was appointed chancellor last fall.

His appointment culminated a five-month, nationwide search that attracted more than 550 candidates. Blumenthal had served as acting chancellor for 14 months prior to his formal appointment by the UC Regents on September 19, 2007.

Editor's Note: Chancellor Blumenthal's biography, official photograph, this press release, and other editorial materials are available in an online "press kit."