The University of Canterbury has announced alumna and former Cabinet Minister Amy Adams is the new Tumu Kaunihera | Chancellor, in a term which commences immediately.
Her appointment as Chancellor continues the University of Canterbury’s groundbreaking tradition of being led by two women, just ahead of International Women’s Day on 8 March.
UC Law graduate and former MP, Amy was appointed to Te Kaunihera o Te Whare Wānanga o Waitaha | UC Council by the Minister of Education Chris Hipkins. She began her four-year term in September 2021 and has now been appointed for a two-year term commencing today (2 March 2022).
Adams says she was honoured to be appointed Tumu Kaunihera | Chancellor at the University.
“It is a privilege to serve the Canterbury community. I feel humbled to be appointed to a role where I can use my experience to support students and staff in strengthening our place as a globally recognised, comprehensive, research-intensive university, delivering world-class education.”
Tumu Whakarae | Vice-Chancellor Professor Cheryl de la Rey says she is delighted to see the role filled by someone who is obviously committed to the Canterbury community.
“I look forward to working alongside Amy as we guide the University in fulfilling its Strategic Vision, especially as we rapidly approach the 150th anniversary celebrations of the University of Canterbury in 2023,” she says.
Professor Te Maire Tau, Pou Whakarae of the Ngāi Tahu Centre at the University of Canterbury, says, “We congratulate Amy on her new appointment and look forward to seeing all she achieves during her term as Tumu Kaunihera. We hope she will strengthen our efforts as we continue to work together to advance academic excellence for all our students.”
Adams was the 98th woman to become an MP in New Zealand and in her valedictory statement said she saw her role as an opportunity to “encourage more women to see their futures without limits and to push back on the still unlevel playing field.”
She graduated with a Bachelor of Laws degree with First Class Honours from the University of Canterbury. Her legal career included becoming a partner in the Christchurch law firm Mortlock McCormack. She was the National Party’s candidate for Selwyn in the 2008 general election and served as a cabinet minister for six years in various roles including Minister for the Environment, Minister for Communications & IT and Minister for Social Investment. Adams served as the MP for Selwyn from 2008 until 2020, when she retired from politics.