Dr. Karen Barnes honoured with president emerita title by YukonU Board

Dr. Karen Barnes

WHITEHORSE, YT—Yukon University founding president and vice chancellor, Dr. Karen Barnes, has been honoured with the title president emerita by the YukonU Board of Governors.

The designation recognizes the outstanding contributions of retired presidents to the University and to the community, including demonstrated excellence, distinguished service, and effective leadership beyond normal expectations.

“Honouring Dr. Barnes with this significant title is a wonderful and fitting way for Yukon University to remain connected with our founding president as she continues to impact learning and research across the North,” said David Morrison, chair of the Yukon University Board of Governors.

“I am deeply grateful and humbled by this honor by the Board of Governors. I am extremely proud to continue a connection with Yukon University as it fulfills its potential as a critical component of the north’s future development,” said Dr. Barnes.

As president emerita, Dr. Barnes can use the designation publicly in connection with academic and community endeavours and officially participate in YukonU convocation ceremonies and other university events.

Dr. Barnes is the first president emerita of Yukon University. Several retired faculty and deans hold the honorific title professor emerita/emeritus.

There is no remuneration connected to the title. Recipients are not required to serve the University but may choose to do so at their own discretion.

Next month, Dr. Barnes will receive a Distinguished Alumni award from the University of Alberta. In November, Dr. Barnes was appointed to the board of Polar Knowledge Canada by the Government of Canada. She is chair of the expert panel on High-Throughput Networks for Rural and Remote Communities with the Canadian Council of Academies, a board member of the University of the Arctic and a member of the selection committees for the Pierre Elliot Trudeau Foundation Scholars, Mentors and Fellows.

Dr. Barnes served as president and vice chancellor from 2011 to 2020, leading the transition of Yukon College to Yukon University. She is a founding member of 100 Women Who Care - Whitehorse.