Development & Alumni Relations Office 

Queen’s installs new Chancellor 

03 July 2015

The formal installation of Honorary Graduate and leading Irish-American businessman Thomas J Moran, as the 10th Chancellor of Queen's University, has taken place.

In a short ceremony in a packed Great Hall, the university's President and Vice-Chancellor Professor Patrick Johnston, referred to Tom Moran as 'someone who shares our passion for education' who  'recognises the transformative effect it has on the world around us.'

A native New Yorker with ancestral roots in Fermanagh and Cavan, Tom Moran is listed as one of the top 100 Irish-American business people in the USA. He has been President and Chief Executive Officer of the Mutual of America Life Insurance Company since October 1994, the first person to have been appointed President from within the Company.

"Tom is no stereotypical corporate titan," said Professor Johnston. "Instead, he leads a life that is defined by service, generosity and a commitment to helping others.

"As CEO of the Mutual of America Life Insurance Company, he has grown the firm to become one of the leading financial services firms in the States, with assets in excess of $13 billion and employing 11,000 people."

Tom Moran is also Chairman of Concern Worldwide (US), Inc., an international humanitarian relief organisation that operates in 30 of the poorest countries of the world. He has contributed to several humanitarian and community causes, including acting as one of a group of unofficial peace envoys to Northern Ireland throughout the 1990s.

Speaking ahead of the installation ceremony, Rotha Johnston, Pro-Chancellor and Chair of the University’s Senate said: “I am delighted that Queen’s has chosen Tom Moran to be its new Chancellor. He joins Queen’s at an exciting time in its development and we very much look forward to the important contribution of our new Chancellor.”

Addressing guests at the Great Hall event, Pro-Chancellor Rotha Johnston added: "Tom, along with your business acumen, your drive and your foresight, you are one of the few people who I think will leave footprints in the sand, and that is why all of us in this room are so incredibly excited that you are going to share Queen’s transformational journey with us in the years ahead."

Accepting the position, Mr Moran said: “It is a great honour to accept the role of Chancellor of this fine institution. Queen’s is known around the world as an innovative, dynamic and exceptional University that helps change lives for the better. I hope, during my time as Chancellor, that I can make a positive contribution to the University’s continued success and to increase further its global impact on society.”

Mr Moran succeeded His Excellency Kamalesh Sharma, Secretary-General of the Commonwealth on 1 May 2015 and will serve as the University’s Chancellor for a period of five years. Among his first duties were to officiate at five summer Graduation Ceremonies in the Sir William Whitla Hall and to bestow Honorary degrees on a number of local and national acadmic and business figures.

Mr Moran graduated from Manhattan College with a Bachelor of Science degree in mathematics.  In 2006, Queen’s University awarded him an Honorary Doctorate of Science (Economics) for services to business, commerce and to public service.  He and his wife Joan currently reside in New York City.

The Chancellor fulfils three main roles – a ceremonial one which involves presiding at degree congregations; an ambassadorial role, where the office holder helps to “open doors” for the University as it seeks to fulfil its mission; and finally as an advisor, available to the Vice-Chancellor and senior management as a “sounding board” and to provide counsel and guidance.

Media inquiries to: Kevin Mulhern, Head of Communications and External Affairs at +44 (0)28 9097 3259 / +44 (0)7813 015431

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