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Murdoch University names respected community leader as new Chancellor

Published: 25th July 2019

Murdoch University is delighted to introduce Mr Gary Smith as the University’s seventh Chancellor and Chair of the University Senate. He succeeds Mr David Flanagan, who is stepping down from the role after the successful completion of two terms.

chancellery-and-new-chancellor-gary-smit

Murdoch University is delighted to introduce Mr Gary Smith as the University’s seventh Chancellor and Chair of the University Senate. He succeeds Mr David Flanagan, who is stepping down from the role after the successful completion of two terms.

 

Mr Flanagan said the highly regarded business and community leader, with his dual passions for education and reconciliation, reflected Murdoch’s commitment to providing high quality learning and opportunities to people from all backgrounds.
 
“Mr Smith is a known supporter and believer in the transformative power of education and the importance of providing environments for learning which inspire success,” Mr Flanagan said. 

This is part of Murdoch’s DNA, it is what we have always done, and we are certain Mr Smith will help us stay focused on continually leading the sector for inclusive and high quality education.

Mr Smith has forged a reputation for his commitment and advocacy for reconciliation between Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal Western Australians through his role as Co-chair of Reconciliation WA, and is a current Director of the WA Aboriginal Leadership Institute (WAALI), a Founding Director of The Committee for Perth and a participant in the Hawaiian Ride for Youth.

He recently retired from accounting and advisory firm KPMG, after leading its Western Australian business for the past seven years. With extensive national and global networks, Mr Smith’s strategic focus will help steer Murdoch to deliver its bold and ambitious agenda, which includes world class research projects, new infrastructure projects and innovative teaching and learning initiatives.

“Gary’s global networks and extensive leadership experience will be of great value to the University as it seeks to further build its reach and impact across the world, especially in the build up to the University’s 50th anniversary in 2024,” Mr Flanagan said.

'An honour and a privilege'

“It has been an honour and a privilege to be the Chancellor of Murdoch University. I am delighted to be passing the role to an outstanding member of the Western Australian community who will continue to support the growth and success of the University. Mr Smith’s reputation as a business leader with absolute integrity and commitment to social and economic advancement will be invaluable as Murdoch seeks to go from strength to strength.”

Vice Chancellor Professor Eeva Leinonen said she was looking forward to welcoming Mr Smith into the role at his investiture, due to take place later this year.

“I would also like to take this opportunity to recognise and thank our outgoing Chancellor David Flanagan, who has provided outstanding service to our University over the past six years.

“Through two terms he has provided strong leadership and made important steps towards implementing Murdoch’s 2027 Strategic Plan.  We wish David every success in his future endeavours,” Professor Leinonen said.