University of Regina announces eighth chancellor

News Release Release Date: June 5, 2013 12:50 p.m.

The University of Regina is pleased to announce that Robert James (Jim) Tomkins, B.A. (Hon.), M.S., Ph.D., has been elected to serve as Chancellor from July 1, 2013 to June 30, 2016. He will serve as the University of Regina's eighth Chancellor.

“During his distinguished career at the University, Dr. Tomkins has served in a number of key administrative positions, and has played an important role in guiding the institution over the past few decades,” said Dr. Vianne Timmons, President and Vice-Chancellor of the University of Regina. “Just as importantly, he has been an active teacher and researcher, and his dedication to and knowledge of this University will be a tremendous asset in the years to come.”   

Tomkins had a 37-year career at the University, having joined the Department of Mathematics and Statistics in 1969.  His administrative roles included serving as President and Vice-Chancellor, Vice-President (Administration), head of the Department of Mathematics and Statistics, and an advisor to the President and Vice-Chancellor.

The University Chancellor's ceremonial duties include chairing the Convocation ceremonies in the spring and fall. The Chancellor also chairs the University of Regina Senate, which is responsible for the academic welfare of the institution. The Chancellor is a voting member of the Board of Governors and most Board standing committees. In addition, the Chancellor is a key representative of the University in the community. The position is elected by members of the University of Regina Senate and is a three-year term, which can be renewed once.

Current Chancellor, Dr. William F. Ready, Q.C., B.A., J.D., LL.D., completes his final term on June 30, 2013.

“I would like to take this opportunity to thank Chancellor Ready for his service to the University over the past six years,” Timmons added. “He has been a strong supporter of our students and programs, and a wonderful ambassador for the University of Regina.”

Robert James (Jim) Tomkins, B.A. (Hon.), M.S., Ph.D.

Jim Tomkins grew up in Regina, Saskatchewan. After completing high school there in 1962, he enrolled at the University of Saskatchewan in Saskatoon, where he earned a

Bachelor of Arts in 1965 and an honours certificate in 1966 in mathematics. He then went on to complete a Master’s degree in 1967 and a doctoral degree in statistics at Purdue University in Lafayette, Indiana in 1970.

Tomkins joined the faculty in the University of Regina’s Department of Mathematics and Statistics in 1969. During his 37-year career at the University, he served as President and Vice-Chancellor from 2007 to 2008, Vice-President (Administration) from 1998 to 2005, as head of the Department of Mathematics and Statistics from 1985 to 1994, and as an advisor to the President from 1980 to 1985. He has chaired the University of Regina Faculty Association, and was a member of the committee overseeing the University’s academic and administrative pension plan for almost 35 years. He also spent nearly four years on a secondment to the Government of Saskatchewan, serving as a senior policy analyst on post-secondary education from 1994 to 1998.

Tomkins had an active research career. He authored or co-authored more than 60 articles in mathematical and statistical journals. His research work was recognized and supported by the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council (NSERC) for 33 years, and he has chaired three different NSERC selection committees.

Tomkins served as a board member on the Regina Palliative Care Inc. from 1992 to 1998, as a council member on the Canadian Red Cross Society from 1994 to 2001, and is currently vice-chair of the board of trustees of the Saskatchewan Healthcare Employees’ Pension Plan from 2002 to present. He is also a board member on the South Saskatchewan Community Foundation, a Director of Bentall Kennedy Prime Canadian Property Fund Ltd. of Vancouver, and a member of the Academic and Administrative Benefits Committee at the University of Regina.

Tomkins was honoured with the Distinguished Service Plaque from the Statistical Society of Canada in 1990, the Distinguished Service Award from the Canadian Association of University Business Officers (CAUBO) in 2005, received the Saskatchewan Centennial Medal in 2006 and the Distinguished Service Award from the University of Regina’s Board of Governors in 2008.


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