Joan Gabel Inaugurated as 17th University of Minnesota President

Joan Gabel Inaugurated as 17th University of Minnesota President

By Melissa Voss, News Editor Originally published in Issue 2, Volume 32 of The University Register on Friday, September 27, 2019

September 20 was a historic day for the University of Minnesota system as Joan Gabel was inaugurated as the 17th university president.

With Eric Kaler announcing his leave of presidency in July of 2018, the search for a new president was underway. After a long process of potential candidates, Joan Gabel was selected as the successor of the presidency in December. Now, she serves as the first female president in the University of Minnesota’s history.

Before working in collegic administrative work, President Gabel worked as an attorney. Not long after, she sought out high positions within Georgia and Florida as well as serving as provost at the University of South Carolina and the dean of the University of Missouri’s Trulaske College of Business.

President Gabel’s inauguration was held at the McNamara Alumni Center at the Twin Cities campus. The ceremony was also live streamed, so although the general public were not welcome to attend physically, individuals could tune in online and view the inauguration. This was the first time that the presidential inauguration had been live streamed and archived for the general public.

The University of Minnesota Morris held a viewing ceremony on inauguration day in Oyate Hall so that students, faculty, and community members could take part in the historic event.

“It is my great honor to lead the University of Minnesota, an institution that’s never been one for shortcuts or settling for less, or for those who prefer leisure over grit or seek only the form without the substance,” Gabel stated. “Ours is a history defined by risk-takers and doers, creators and discoverers — some celebrated as Nobel Laureates, Olympians, and titans of industry — but ultimately, and collectively, by those whose talent and resourcefulness have transformed our state and society for the better.”

Following the inauguration, President Gabel was led outside where Twin Cities community members congratulated her as she walked down Scholars Walk on her way to Northrop Mall, where she delivered her inaugural address. Celebratory festivities carried on in celebration of the new president; with food trucks, lawn games, and music taking place at Northrop Mall.

Photo on top courtesy of Pioneer Press