April 30, 2020

Dean Lesley Rigg appointed vice-president, research at Western University

A message from Dru Marshall, provost and vice-president (academic)

Dr. Lesley Rigg, dean of the Faculty of Science, has been appointed vice-president, research at Western University, effective Aug. 1, 2020. She is stepping down from her role as dean of the Faculty of Science on May 31, 2020, and will be leaving the university officially on July 31, 2020.  

I would like to thank Dr. Rigg for her passion, commitment and significant contributions to UCalgary over the past five years. Dr. Rigg was appointed dean of the Faculty of Science on July 1, 2015, having previously served as vice-president for research and innovation partnerships at Northern Illinois University (NIU).

Dr. Rigg was the first female dean of the Faculty of Science. During her tenure as dean, Dr. Rigg has been broadly seen as an engaged, energetic, and passionate visionary who is a strong advocate, ambassador, and champion of science. Dr. Rigg led the development of a new strategic plan for the Faculty: Curiosity Sparks Discovery.  The process was highly consultative and resulted in a common set of goals that have helped to ensure strategic allocation of resources while moving the faculty forward. Dr. Rigg also placed an important focus on equity, diversity and inclusion in the faculty. The first employee engagement under her leadership demonstrated significant positive (double digit increases) in engagement scores in the faculty.

Dr. Rigg is a forest ecologist, earning a bachelor’s degree in geography and environmental studies from York University in Toronto, a master’s degree in geography from the University of Colorado, and a doctorate degree in geography and environmental studies from the University of Melbourne in Australia.

Most recently, Dr. Rigg became a fellow of the Royal Canadian Geographic Society and received a Woman of Inspiration Award for being a Vision Builder in Canada.

An interim dean will be named shortly and an advisory search committee for a new dean of the Faculty of Science will be struck in the coming months.

Please join me in congratulating Lesley on her new role at Western University.

Dru Marshall
Provost and Vice-President (Academic)