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IU president announces retirement

BLOOMINGTON, Ind. (Inside INdiana Business) — Indiana University President Michael McRobbie says he will step down next year after 24 years in Bloomington. The university’s board of trustees has approved a resolution to form a presidential search committee to conduct a national search for McRobbie’s successor.

McRobbie, who became IU’s 18th president in 2007 after 10 years in various senior positions at the university, will retire in June 2021. The university says he will continue leading IU through the current academic year.

“In his 13 years as president, Michael McRobbie has overseen an extensive transformation of IU’s academic landscape, worked tirelessly to enhance the quality and diversity of IU’s student body, and strengthened IU’s reputation as the state’s research powerhouse,” said Michael Mirro, chair of the IU Board of Trustees. “He has also regularly offered generous and wise counsel to me and other members of the IU Board of Trustees on the most important issues facing IU and higher education in our state. We are deeply grateful to him for his exceptional service, and we appreciate that he will continue to lead us through this challenging and unprecedented time in the university’s history.”

Before being named president, McRobbie served as vice president for information technology, chief information officer, vice president for research and interim provost and vice president for academic affairs at IU.

The university touted several of McRobbie’s accomplishments during his tenure as president, including overseeing what it calls the most comprehensive academic transformation in IU’s history, the launch of the Grand Challenges initiative, and the new IU Health Regional Academic Health Center, which is currently under construction.

McRobbie made his retirement announcement Friday during a meeting of the IU Board of Trustees, however, the board says it was informed of McRobbie’s decision several months ago and has been planning for the transition since then. 

The presidential search committee will be co-chaired by trustees Harry Gonso and Melanie Walker. The remainder of the committee will be appointed by Mirro.

“Indiana University has benefited enormously from Michael McRobbie’s steady leadership, wisdom, innovative ideas and experience,” Walker said. “As one of the longest-tenured and most accomplished university presidents in the nation, he will leave large shoes to fill. But I am confident we will identify a leader who will build upon his accomplishments and continue to further IU’s longstanding traditions of academic excellence, world-class research and engagement in the life of our state.”

IU says the goal is to have a new president in place when McRobbie leaves office.