SALT LAKE CITY — Following an extensive national search, the Utah Board of Higher Education announced Thursday they have selected Taylor R. Randall, Ph.D., as the 17th president of the University of Utah.
Randall succeeds Ruth V. Watkins, who served as president from 2018-2021. He will assume the position on Monday, August 9.
“There are no better opportunities in higher education and health care in this country than what lies in front of the University of Utah. I am deeply humbled to lead and serve the U and its phenomenal faculty, staff and students as we seek to elevate our stature as a public university and health care system,” Randall said in a press release.
Randall is currently dean of the David Eccles School of Business, a position he’s been in since 2009. Under his leadership, the Eccles School has seen massive growth and has been able to build a national reputation.
The Marriner S. Eccles Institute for Economics and Quantitative Analysis, the Sorenson Impact Center, the Kem C. Gardner Policy Institute and the Goff Strategic Leadership Center all have opened under Randall’s guidance and direction.
“Dr. Taylor Randall is an exceptional leader who has led the University of Utah’s David Eccles School of Business to great success, and I am confident he will bring those strengths to his new role as president of the U of U," said Harris H. Simmons, Board chair and search committee co-chair in a press release. "Dr. Randall’s years of institutional knowledge and innovative solutions will enable even more students, faculty and staff to reach their full potential.”
A committee made of 32 members have spent the last seven months searching for a new president. Randall was one of three finalists announced in July.
Governor Cox took to twitter to offer his congratulations on Randall's new role at the University.
"It’s impossible for me to overstate how excited I am for this announcement. Taylor Randall represents the best of our state and the U," Cox tweeted. "He has been a friend and mentor and helped guide our state’s economy through the pandemic. This is a brilliant pick."
It’s impossible for me to overstate how excited I am for this announcement. Taylor Randall represents the best of our state and the U. He has been a friend and mentor and helped guide our state’s economy through the pandemic. This is a brilliant pick. https://t.co/yoDi6p0OrS— Spencer Cox (@SpencerJCox) August 5, 2021
Before he took on the role of Dean, Randall was a professor of accounting for 11 years and received many awards nationally for his work. He graduated from the University of Utah with honors in accounting and then earned an MBA and Ph.D. in operations and information management from the Wharton School of Business at the University of Pennsylvania.
“As a third-generation professor, my commitment to the university runs deep," Randall said in a press release. "The University of Utah transformed me as an undergraduate student and gave me a crucial head start in my career and sustained me as a researcher—a scenario I hope to replicate over and over again for future graduates of and faculty at the U."