SIU System President Randy J. Dunn has appointed Dr. Paul D. Sarvela to serve as the acting chancellor of the SIU Carbondale campus.
The recommendation to appoint Sarvela as a replacement for Rita Cheng, who is leaving for Northern Arizona University, received approval of the board of trustees in a meeting Tuesday at the SIU Stone Center.
“Dr. Sarvela has my full confidence. I know he has the leadership skills to unite and shepherd positive growth on the SIUC campus,” said Dunn. “I look forward to a great partnership as we work together to strengthen the SIU System and to meet SIUC’s goal of being a leader in higher education and serving as an economic engine for Southern Illinois.”
Most recently, Sarvela served as the vice president for academic affairs of the Southern Illinois University system. Previously, he served as dean of the College of Applied Sciences and Arts, chairman of the Department of Health Care Professions, and director of the Center for Rural Health and Social Service Development at SIU Carbondale.
He is a tenured professor of health care management, professor of health education and clinical professor of family and community medicine who has published more than 70 articles in the professional literature and secured more than $4 million in grants and contracts for SIU as well as regional and state agencies.
“It is a great honor to receive the confidence this appointment brings, and I pledge to our faculty, staff, students and alumni to have an open door, a willing ear and firm resolve as we work together to fulfill the mission of this great institution,” Sarvela said.
“I want to express my appreciation to President Dunn and the Board of Trustees for this opportunity,” he added. “It’s the chance of a lifetime, and I look forward to working with the SIUC community to ensure everyone we serve has an opportunity to receive an affordable, quality education.”
Dunn said he will be presenting Dr. Sarvela’s name for appointment as interim chancellor at the full SIU Board of Trustees meeting on July 24 at the SIU School of Medicine in Springfield.