Chair's report - January Board meeting

February 13, 2024

This report contains general updates and a summary of the topics discussed at Open Session of the January 25 Board meeting. Items discussed at this meeting represent matters of importance at the highest level of the institution, and these reports will help provide context and clarity around the progression of major projects and decisions.

You can read President Johnson’s report from the meeting here.

Board Chair and Deputy Board Chair reappointments

Last week, University Secretary Margarita Fullerton shared that Paula Martin and I have been reappointed as Board Deputy Chair and Board Chair, respectively.

As an alumnus with a long history at SFU, I am honoured to continue serving as Board Chair until the end of my term as a Board member in July. Thank you to my Board colleagues for entrusting me with this position, and to Paula for her work to date as Deputy Chair. There are exciting opportunities ahead of us at SFU and I look forward to working with the Board to support the community in the coming months.

President Joy Johnson reappointed for a second term

I am thrilled that the Board of Governors has unanimously approved the reappointment of incumbent president and vice-chancellor Dr. Joy Johnson for a further five-year term. As chair of the Presidential Reappointment Review Committee, and during our discussions at the Board, I heard strongly that President Johnson is the right leader for SFU at this time. We are confident in her ability to navigate SFU to new heights, through the challenges and opportunities ahead of us.

We are grateful to President Johnson for her service as president and vice-chancellor thus far, and the Board looks forward to working with her as we bring SFU’s vision, values and priorities to life.


These continue to be challenging and dynamic financial times for SFU and for the post-secondary sector as a whole. I want to assure the community that the Board is working closely with the executive team to monitor the financial health of the institution and develop strategies to manage the path forward. A Board working group has been struck to ensure that we are aligned on the overall approach to the budget in the months ahead.

Board Governance Review 

Over the past year, the Board has undergone a comprehensive governance review in order to modernize our structures and systems to best serve the university. As part of that process, the Board plans to repeal policy B10.02 so that the Board can re-establish its structure and practices per the parameters of the University Act. The consultation for this change is underway now; you can learn more on the Board website.

Board-Senate retreat

Members of the Board were very pleased to attend the Board-Senate retreat in January with a focus on strengthening our bicameral governance system. Our Board governance review also recognized the importance of collegial governance and the necessity of building a healthy and vibrant relationship with Senate. I believe the foundation established at this retreat will help Board and Senate to work together as one team and effectively make decisions on major projects, such as the SFU Medical School.

Community members are invited to attend our next Board meeting, on March 28 at the Vancouver campus. More details and a full schedule of upcoming meetings and locations are available on our website.

Angie Lamarsh
Chair, Board of Governors
Simon Fraser University