Update on executive appointments

29 October 2018 | From Kgethi

Dear colleagues and students

The University of Cape Town’s (UCT) Leadership Lekgotla comprises 23 members. This senior management team is made up of the vice-chancellor, three deputy vice-chancellors, a chief operating officer, the registrar, seven deans, the Graduate School of Business director and nine executive directors. It is responsible for the leadership of the university as a whole, including the implementation of the strategic goals, the university’s overall financial health, the institution’s academic standing, as well as transformation and social justice interventions.

As it stands, 16 of the Leadership Lekgotla positions are now filled by permanent appointees. The remaining seven posts are currently occupied on an acting or interim basis.

This communication serves to provide an update on recent executive appointments and the progress made on posts that are in the process of being filled.

The following five executive positions have been filled since I took office on 1 July 2018:

Chief Operating Officer

Dr Reno Morar, the deputy dean for Health Services in the Faculty of Health Sciences (FHS), has been appointed as the chief operating officer (COO). This new post has been created to improve the efficiency of the university’s operations by dealing with important operational issues in departments such as Information and Communication Technology Services, Libraries, and Properties and Services, which require a dedicated focus. Dr Morar is currently allocating only 40% of his time to the role while allocating 60% of his time to his FHS post during this transitionary period. Dr Morar will formally move into the COO post with effect from 1 February 2019.

Read Dr Morar’s abridged CV.

Dean: Commerce

Associate Professor Linda Ronnie has been appointed as the new dean of the Faculty of Commerce.

Associate Professor Ronnie, who took up her new role on 22 October 2018, brings a wealth of institutional knowledge and experience. She joined UCT in 2002 as a senior lecturer in human resource management and has since held numerous leadership positions at UCT’s Graduate School of Business.

Read Associate Professor Ronnie’s abridged CV.

Executive Director: Information and Communication Technology Services

Mr Richard van Huyssteen, who is currently the acting executive director of Information and Communication Technology Services (ICTS), will take up the role on a permanent basis with effect from 1 November. He has served as the director of the Systems Division within ICTS since 2014. Mr Van Huyssteen first joined UCT as manager of the Faculty of Science in 1994 and has held several other roles at the university.

Read Mr Van Huyssteen’s abridged CV.

Executive Director: Libraries

Ms Ujala Satgoor has been appointed as the new executive director for libraries. She will take up the position from 1 January 2019. Ms Satgoor brings with her years of experience in the higher education environment. She is currently the director of library services at Rhodes University, a position she has held since 2012.

Read Ms Satgoor’s abridged CV.

Executive Director: Properties and Services

Mr Mughtar Parker took over as the new executive director of Properties and Services on 1 July 2018. Mr Parker, who joined UCT from Wits University, has exceptional experience in property services and development and has held senior management roles at a number of top companies since June 1995.

Read Mr Parker’s abridged CV.

Recruitment processes for the following seven positions are in progress:

Deputy Vice-Chancellor: Research and Internationalisation

Interviews were conducted on 12 October and no recommended candidate was put forward. The post will be re-advertised. Professor Michael Kyobe has been acting in this role from 1 July 2018 and will continue to do so until a substantive appointment is made.

Dean: Centre for Higher Education Development

Interviews were conducted on 27 August 2018 and no recommended candidate was put forward. Associate Professor Alan Cliff has been appointed as acting dean from 10 September 2018 until 31 January 2019.

Dean: Faculty of Health Sciences

Professor Carolyn Williamson has been appointed as the interim dean of the Faculty of Health Sciences, effective from 1 October 2018 until 30 September 2019. The recruitment process for a substative dean is yet to get underway.

Dean: Faculty of Humanities

Interviews were held and there was no suitable candidate found in the first selection committee process. The second recruitment process was halted on 21 September 2018 following a procedural error. A new selection process will begin afresh. Professor David Wardle has been serving as acting dean since 1 January 2018 and will continue in the role until 31 December 2018.

Dean: Faculty of Law

The post has been advertised and shortlisting will happen soon. Professor Hugh Corder has been serving in an acting capacity since 28 May 2018 and will continue to do so until a substantive appointment is made.

Dean: Faculty of Science

No candidate was found in the first selection committee process. The process is currently in the second selection phase. Faculty presentations and interviews are scheduled for 30 and 31 October 2018. Professor Susan Bourne has been the interim dean since 1 January 2018 and will serve in this capacity until 30 June 2019 or a substantive appointment is made, whichever comes first.

Director: Graduate School of Business

The selection committee is yet to meet. Associate Professor Kosheek Sewchurran has been appointed as acting director from 7 June 2018 until a substantive appointment is made.

The executive looks forward to working with all our colleagues in the Leadership Lekgotla. We will oversee the finalisation of all recruitment processes in progress to ensure, with the assistance of our colleagues across the institution, the smooth governance of UCT.


Professor Mamokgethi Phakeng

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