The three-year appointment—approved by University Senate at its April 27 meeting—starts on July 1, when McCreath takes over from Roy Romanow, who was named chancellor in 2016.
“This is truly one of the most significant honours I can think of,” said McCreath, who graduated from USask’s College of Education in 1991. “I am so humbled to be able to serve in this role because the university has been central to my life even as a child.”
From spending Sundays on campus with her parents as a youngster, to being a student and alumna, to being a member of the University Senate and the Board of Governors, McCreath has held many roles at USask, giving her time and energy for the better part of 20 years.
Most recently, McCreath was named the university’s inaugural honorary ambassador, a role she has held since 2015. Duties for that position included meeting with and hosting alumni and donors, recruiting students, mentoring individuals and groups, attending university events and ceremonies, and providing the president with feedback from the community.
“I see this role as an extension of my work as the university’s honorary ambassador,” said McCreath, who spent 32 years as a teacher and education administrator in Saskatoon, Toronto, Edmonton and Calgary. “I am excited to enhance the university’s reputation, celebrate its history, support the exceptional leadership of President Stoicheff, and work with students, faculty and alumni.”
McCreath is very familiar with the university—as is her entire family with more than 20 degrees in total: her parents were graduates, as are her three siblings, her husband (and many members of his family), and one of their two children. This level of connectedness makes McCreath well positioned to share with others “all the things that make this such an incredible place.”
McCreath, who was recently named a 2019 recipient of the Saskatchewan Order of Merit, said she looks forward to showing as many people as possible how essential the university is to the province and beyond.
“Two of my strengths that will serve me well in this role are relationship building and communication,” said McCreath. “As we continue to deliver on the promise of our university plan to be the university the world needs, I am thrilled to use my skills to bring USask to centre stage and show the world the value our institution brings.”
“Grit McCreath has long been one of our university’s proudest supporters and to have someone with such significant connections to our institution step into this role to serve our university is really meaningful,” said Peter Stoicheff, USask president and vice-chancellor. “The qualities Grit brings to this prestigious role will serve our university exceptionally well and I could not be more pleased to welcome someone of such outstanding character.”
“With my sincerest gratitude, I also want to thank Roy Romanow for his service as chancellor over the past three years,” said Stoicheff. “It was my honour to work alongside of Roy and see how he advanced USask’s priorities and reputation on the provincial, national and international stages and we are pleased that he will continue to contribute to our university in other capacities in the future.”
As chancellor, McCreath will preside at university convocation ceremonies, confer degrees, chair University Senate and serve on the Board of Governors.
“It is my hope that I live up to the high standards set by my predecessors in this role, particularly Roy Romanow, Blaine Favel and Vera Pezer,” said McCreath. “With the support of my husband Scott and my sons Andy and James, I am certainly up to the challenge.”