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Otago appoints new head of External Engagement

Wednesday 14 October 2020 2:44pm

Tony Ballantyne announced DVC External Engagement Image 2020
Professor Tony Ballantyne, FRSNZ.

Leading historian Professor Tony Ballantyne, FRSNZ, has accepted a new role at the University of Otago as Deputy Vice-Chancellor (External Engagement), effective from next year.

Professor Ballantyne is currently Pro-Vice-Chancellor of the Division of Humanities and was selected after an internal process to replace Professor Helen Nicholson.

The External Engagement Division of the University comprises Marketing, Communications, International, Development and Alumni Relations, and Schools’ Liaison, and was formed in 2015 to give the University a strategic focus on strong external engagement.

Announcing the appointment yesterday, Vice-Chancellor Professor Harlene Hayne says Professor Ballantyne brings a range of important skills to the role.

“He has a deep understanding of the University of Otago and its history, which is shown in his major intellectual contribution to the University’s 150th anniversary celebrations – the creation of an oral history video of our institution.

“He has also had extensive academic experience and connections overseas, particularly in the Pacific which is an area of strategic focus for us.

“I’m delighted that Tony will be bringing his outstanding communication skills and his strong track-record of leadership to our External Engagement Division.”

Professor Ballantyne says he is looking forward to “working with the amazing team which has developed in External Engagement over the past five years as they share and shape the University’s stories with our stakeholders”.

“I have loved working with the Humanities Division, and I will always think of myself as a Humanities scholar. But I have also been drawn to the all-of-institution work which the External Engagement Division undertakes, and I have a strong interest in the ways in which we think about our University and communicate the significance of its work to the world.”

Professor Ballantyne grew up in Dunedin, attending King’s High School and graduating from Otago with a BA (Hons) in History in 1993. He was awarded a Prince of Wales Scholarship to undertake a PhD at the University of Cambridge, which he gained in 1999. Before returning to Otago to join the Department of History and Art History in 2002, he held faculty positions at the National University of Ireland and the University of Illinois.

He will continue his research activity in the Centre for Research on Colonial Culture and is excited to strengthen his connections to his academic unit, History.

Professor Ballantyne will take up his new role on 15 January 2021, and a further recruitment process to replace him in his role as Pro-Vice-Chancellor (Humanities) will be announced in due course.

Professor Helen Nicholson, whom Professor Ballantyne is replacing, will take up a new role as Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Academic) on 16 January 2021.

For more information contact:

Mark Hathaway
Senior Communications Adviser
University of Otago
Mob +64 21 279 5016