McMaster’s Mamdouh Shoukri chosen as next president of York

The Chair of the Board of Governors of York University, Marshall M. Cohen, last night announced the appointment of Mamdouh Shoukri as York’s seventh president and vice-chancellor. Shoukri’s selection was confirmed – and enthusiastically welcomed  – during an evening meeting of the Board of Governors at the Schulich School of Business.

"We are absolutely delighted to announce the appointment of Dr. Shoukri, who is a proven leader, academic and researcher," said Cohen. "Dr. Shoukri joins York from McMaster University where he has shown himself to be a skilled administrator, diplomat and visionary. We are delighted that he has accepted our offer to lead this dynamic institution".

Above, left to right:  York President & Vice-Chancellor Lorna R. Marsden, President-designate Mamdouh Shoukri and Board of Governors Chair Marshall Cohen, shortly after last night’s Board of Governors meeting at the Schulich School of Business

Egyptian-born Shoukri, 59, is currently the vice-president (research & international affairs) at McMaster University in Hamilton and a professor of mechanical engineering. A member of the Ontario Research & Innovation Council (ORIC), Shoukri previously worked in various capacities with the Research Division of Ontario Hydro, before becoming a faculty member at McMaster and, later, dean of engineering.

"I am very excited by this new challenge which is without doubt the greatest of my career," said Shoukri. "I watched York grow to become Canada’s third-largest university and it is racing ahead. I consider myself to be very privileged to be given this opportunity at this important juncture in York’s history."

Marsden puts a York pin in Shoukri’s lapel at post-meeting reception

"York is a vibrant and thriving academic institution which will benefit greatly from Dr. Shoukri’s experience and vision," said York’s outgoing president and vice-chancellor Lorna R. Marsden. "The past decade has been tremendously satisfying for me, and I wish Dr. Shoukri the same satisfaction in his new role. He is clearly a first-class academic and is the perfect person to champion York’s mission with its heavy emphasis on interdisciplinary research and teaching. Dr. Shoukri will also have the opportunity to lead York through its 50th anniversary in 2009."

Peter George, president of McMaster University, commented: "Mamdouh is a proven leader in fostering dynamic academic environments where research and innovation flourish. He is a splendid and supportive colleague and all of us at McMaster wish him every success at York."

Shoukri will officially assume his new role on July 1, 2007. He will be installed formally as York’s seventh president during the Fall 2007 term. Working arrangements during the transition period will be discussed between York and McMaster in the coming weeks.

The Presidential Search Committee, chaired by Cohen, was composed of 14 members, with seven nominated by the Board of Governors and seven by the York Senate. The committee included senators, governors, faculty, students and staff. After wide consultation with the York University community regarding the process and the profile for the position, the candidate search process itself was conducted confidentially by the committee. For more information on the process, click here.

More about York’s president-designate

Mamdouh Shoukri joined the faculty of McMaster University in 1984 and was appointed Chair of the Mechanical Engineering Department in 1990 and dean of the Faculty of Engineering in 1994. He assumed his current position in 2001. 

As vice-president (research & international affairs) at McMaster, Shoukri is responsible for all research activities within the university and for the aggressive pursuit of new partnerships – including technology transfer and economic development opportunities – locally, nationally and internationally, designed to capitalize on McMaster’s significant research strengths. The McMaster Innovation Park exemplifies the success he and the university have had in developing their research enterprise.

As dean of engineering, Shoukri developed a strategic plan that led to a major expansion of the Faculty. He actively encouraged and facilitated the creation of research thrust areas in partnership with industry and government.  Under his leadership, the Faculty nearly doubled its enrolment and faculty complement and substantially increased its research funding. He also led a very successful fundraising campaign.

Shoukri is a member of the Ontario Research and Innovation Council (ORIC) – a council appointed by the premier in July 2006 to advise the government on its innovation strategy in order to keep Ontario’s economy strong.  He is also a member of the board of directors of the Ontario Centres of Excellence Inc.  He has served on the Ontario Government Advisory Committee for the Centres of Excellence and on the board of directors for two centres — Materials and Manufacturing Ontario and Communications and Information Technology Ontario.

Shoukri is also a Fellow of the Canadian Academy of Engineering and the Canadian Society of Mechanical Engineering.  His professional memberships include the Association of Professional Engineers of Ontario, the Canadian Nuclear Society and the American Society of Mechanical Engineers.

His scholarly interests are in thermo-fluid sciences, particularly areas related to multi-phase heat transfer and nuclear reactor thermal-hydraulics. He is the author and co-author of over 100 papers that appeared in refereed journals and symposia.  His education credentials include BSc (Hons.), mechanical engineering, Cairo University, 1970; MEng, McMaster University, 1974; and PhD, mechanical engineering, McMaster, 1977.

Prior to joining McMaster, Shoukri worked in various capacities for the Research Division of Ontario Hydro (1977-1984) where he had a successful industrial research career.