July 9, 2021

Karen Jackson retiring Oct. 31, ELT update

Message to the campus community from President Ed McCauley
Karen Jackson
Karen Jackson

Good morning,

I am writing to provide updates on the University of Calgary’s Executive Leadership Team.

Karen Jackson, our General Counsel, has announced she will be retiring on Oct. 31, 2021.

Karen has served the university with distinction since joining in 2012. She built the university’s modern Legal Services team and Protected Disclosure office, helping the university navigate through many challenging times. In her time as General Counsel, she has supported the institution and its faculty and staff through legal challenges and moral quandaries. She has spearheaded the updating of many university policies — from the Code of Conduct to the Harassment Policy and many others in between.

During her tenure, she has provided exceptional advice and insight to me and to many other senior leaders across our campuses. Her analytical capacity, exceptional judgment and calm approach has made her a widely respected member of our team.

Karen’s retirement is some months away still and we will have time to celebrate her many accomplishments. But I hope you will join me in thanking her for everything she has done — and will continue to do — for our university.

 Karen will be succeeded as General Counsel on Nov. 1, 2021, by Jacqueline Lacasse, our current Associate Vice-President (Labour Relations).

Jacqueline is a graduate of the University of Calgary Faculty of Law and received her Bachelor of Arts (Economics) from McGill University. Prior to joining UCalgary, Jacqueline was a senior associate with a leading labour and employment law firm. Jacqueline practiced law in both private practice and as in-house counsel for Alberta Health Services until she joined the university in 2012. As Associate Vice-President (Labour Relations), she has provided strategic leadership and management of collective bargaining, labour relations and workplace investigations, and she will continue oversight of these functions in her new role. Jacqueline has been both a member of the Alberta Labour Relations Board and has represented the post-secondary sector on the provincial labour relations advisory committee since 2016.

As Karen Jackson put it earlier today, “Jacqueline Lacasse is an exceptional leader and legal mind who will serve the university community very well.” I certainly agree. Please join me in congratulating Jacqueline on her upcoming role as General Counsel.

 I’m also able to provide today an update on interim leadership for the Vice-President (Finance and Services) portfolio.

Effective Aug. 1, 2021, Ron Kim (Senior Associate Vice-President, Finance) and Michael Van Hee (Associate Vice-President – Human Resources) will become Interim Vice-Presidents, members of the Executive Leadership Team reporting to me, until such a time as a permanent Vice-President (Finance and Services) is named.

Ron Kim, Interim-Vice President (Finance and Services) – Finance will oversee Finance, Ancillary and the Office of Internal Audit. Before joining the University of Calgary earlier this year, Ron spent more than 25 years working in finance with various large organizations, most recently at Canadian Natural Resources Limited (CNRL), where he was a vice-president and corporate officer. Ron is an alumnus of the University of Calgary, holding a Bachelor of Commerce degree. He is a Chartered Professional Accountant, Certified Public Accountant (Illinois) and Chartered Global Management Accountant.

Michael Van Hee, Interim-Vice President (Finance and Services) – Services will oversee Human Resources, Environmental Health and Safety, Information Technology, Risk and Facilities. Mike joined the University of Calgary in January 2020 after leadership positions within the private sector including Wolseley Canada Inc., Repsol Oil and Gas Canada Inc., and Talisman Energy Inc., where he progressed to hold a global vice-presidential appointment. In his time at the university, Mike has provided strategic leadership and trusted counsel for the HR portfolio, modernizing processes and addressing the many HR issues that have come up through COVID-19. Mike is an alumnus of the University of Alberta, holding a Bachelor of Commerce degree. He also holds the Chartered Professional in Human Resources designation.

Please join me in congratulating Ron and Mike on their appointments.



Ed McCauley
President and Vice-Chancellor