Bishop’s University has appointed lawyer and former newspaper publisher Michael Goldbloom as its next principal and vice-chancellor.
Goldbloom, 55, has spent much of his career in the newspaper industry. He been the publisher of both the Montreal Gazette (1994-2001) and the Toronto Star (2004-06). The McGill grad two year ago assumed a vice-president position at his alma mater as head of government relations and media relations.
Goldbloom’s appointment also grows the number of university presidents who are not Ph.D.s or lifetime academics. Last month, the University of Ottawa named former politician Allan Rock to its presidency. Long-time politician and former foreign affairs minister Lloyd Axworthy heads the University of Winnipeg. Though he is not a career academic, he does hold a Ph.D. Sean Riley had a long career in business prior to become president of St. Francis Xavier University, though like Axworthy he too holds a Ph.D.
Goldbloom was born in Montreal and received his undergraduate degree from Harvard and law degrees from McGill. In the mid-1980s, he served as president of the anglophone lobby group Alliance Quebec. Eastern Quebec’s Townshippers’ Association, an organization that promotes the interests of English-speakers in the region, applauded the selection committee’s decision.
“We hope that Bishop’s continues the trend of integrating into the English community of the Eastern Townships,” spokesperson Rachel Garber told the Sherbrooke Record.
Goldbloom will replace former principal Robert Poupart, who left the position last November with a year and a half left in his term. The Record reported that Bishop’s would not say whether a severance package has been negotiated with Poupart.
Mark Lawson, the president of the Bishop’s Student Representative Council, had only positive things to say about Goldbloom.
“I’m really excited. I was fortunate enough to meet with him and his wife yesterday afternoon. He requested to meet with me, which I was really flattered by,” he said.
“It really shows an understanding of what the Bishop’s community is all about. It’s a small, community-based, liberal-arts institution … I’m impressed we were able to get him.”
The appointment ends a six-month search for a new principal.