The Right Honourable, Sir Brian Leveson, who is a Lord Justice of Appeal, will replace the current Chancellor, Dr Brian May – astronomer and acclaimed guitarist with the rock band Queen – who has held the position since 2008.
Sir Brian will assume the role of Chancellor at the end of March, with an official inauguration ceremony planned for May in the Liverpool Anglican Cathedral.
His appointment by the Board of Governors reflects LJMU’s renewed mission to be "recognised as a modern civic university delivering solutions to the challenges of the 21st Century". As Chancellor, his formal duties will include presiding over graduation ceremonies and he will also act as an ambassador for the University, both at home and abroad.
Professor Nigel Weatherill, LJMU Vice-Chancellor, explains:
“We believe that LJMU has a key role to play in shaping the society we know today and how we want to live in the future. The appointment of Sir Brian as Chancellor reflects this ambition and I have no doubt that his unparalleled professional experience and personal integrity will be of great benefit to the University as we strive to achieve our future goals."
Sir Brian’s formal association with LJMU began in 2010, when he delivered a Roscoe Lecture entitled 'Criminal Justice in the 21st Century' for the University’s Foundation for Citizenship. Last year, he was made an Honorary Fellow of the University during its graduation ceremonies in July.
Sir Brian comments:
"It is with enormous pride and no small measure of humility that I accept the role of Chancellor. LJMU is a University with a long and distinguished history and as a son of the city of Liverpool I have long been aware of the transformational impact of the University on the lives of so many generations of students. The ethos of the University, summarised in the phrase, 'dream, plan and achieve', is an enormously powerful message in seeking to encourage anyone, from any background, to benefit from higher education.
"I share LJMU’s belief that the University should be a positive force for change, both in the lives of individuals and also in society more generally, through research, scholarship and meaningful public engagement. As Chancellor I hope to play my part in helping LJMU achieve these laudable and vitally important ambitions."
Pro-Chancellor and Chairman of the Board of Governors, Sir Malcolm Thornton adds:
"The role of Chancellor is enormously important for the University and Sir Brian Leveson perfectly embodies the ethos of this unique institution.
"His reputation for intellectual rigour, fairness and approachability combined with his meteoric rise through the ranks of the legal profession make him an exceptionally powerful role model for current and future students of all disciplines. I have no doubt that he will be an excellent Chancellor of the University."
Outgoing Chancellor Dr Brian May will now join Cherie Booth QC as an Emeritus Chancellor of the University. Cherie Booth served as Chancellor between 1999 and 2006.
Reflecting on his term of office, Dr Brian May comments:
"It has been a great honour to serve as Chancellor. I never expected my interaction with the staff and the students to be so inspiring and it has been truly humbling to share in their success at graduation every year. This is a great University and I look forward to continuing my association with LJMU as it embarks upon a new path, with a new Chancellor – I wish him every success."
Pictured above (left to right): Professor Nigel Weatherill and Sir Brian Leveson