June 3, 2023

It’s Official: O’Donnell Named Provost

To all faculty and staff:

I am writing to share the news that I have asked Tim O’Donnell to continue serving as our provost and chief academic officer and am removing “interim” from his title. He has done an excellent job in this role over the past year, knows where we are going and what it will take, and offers us a steady and committed hand as we move forward to confront the significant demographic and financial challenges before us.

I know that last year I indicated we would do a national search for a new provost, and the last thing I want to do is undermine your trust in me or my leadership.  I hope that each of you understand and can respect, however, that circumstances change. Tim’s excellent leadership of Academic Affairs and Admissions over the past year and the need for continuity and stability of leadership in both of these areas, as well as on my Cabinet, convinced me that a national search would not be what is in the best interests of the institution.

As an institution, we must continue our focus on the recruitment and retention of students, be prudent in our allocation of resources, work within the bounds of Virginia higher education, and continue moving forward in the strategic direction endorsed by our Board of Visitors. Importantly, Tim understands the limits and possibilities of our present position, is a critical part of my leadership team, and is committed to our students, our employees, and our mission. We have much to accomplish in the coming months and I am grateful that he is willing to continue serving UMW in this capacity. We have come through a very difficult period these past couple of years and there are many challenges ahead.  And yet I could not be more optimistic about our future, so long as we continue our momentum and work together for the success of our University.

Troy D. Paino, JD, PhD