Today's Update: Thursday, June 11

June 11, 2020

Dear Student Life Team, 

I’ve been getting a lot of questions over the past week about our incoming university president, Dr. Kristina Johnson. (This is a nice change from the previous most-asked question I get, which is about the upcoming football season!)  

I had not met her prior to the announcement at last week’s Board of Trustees meeting, but I was able to connect with her and her wife, Veronica Meinhard, last week. I came away thoroughly impressed.  

My immediate reaction is that Dr. Johnson is smart, dedicated and savvy. I’m particularly impressed with her passion and commitment to students, something we hold dear in Student Life. I feel very confident about working with her to support our students. I loved a story she told in a recent Lantern article about how she’s already connecting with students.

Dr. Johnson will be here on September 1 and is now working hard to wrap up as Chancellor of the State University of New York. That system has 64 campuses, 1.3 million students, 30,000 faculty and 90,000 employees. That’s big, so I’m sure she has plenty of wrapping up to do.  

Dr. Johnson has a very impressive resume. You can read more about her online. Highlights include founding and running several successful science and technology companies, being named Under Secretary of Energy at the U.S. Department of Energy and academic leadership positions at places including Johns Hopkins University, Duke University and the University of Colorado at Boulder.  

Her grandfather graduated from Ohio State in 1896. And, I love this, he played on the football team!  

Ohio State is an amazing institution with enormous goals and important work to do in returning to our campuses in the fall. It will take a special leader to inspire and usher in the future. I believe Dr. Johnson is just the right person to do this. She’s going to be Scarlet and Great!  

Melissa