Media Release From Ohio State University

Jan. 30, 2014
Contact: Gary Lewis
Michael Drake Appointed The Ohio State University’s
15th President
Current UC Irvine chancellor assumes office June 30
Columbus, Ohio – The Ohio State University Board of Trustees today appointed Michael V. Drake as the
university’s 15th president. Drake, who has been the chancellor of the University of California, Irvine, since
2005, is a medical doctor and member of both the Institute of Medicine and the American Academy of Arts and
“Today is a great day for The Ohio State University as we welcome Michael V. Drake as Ohio State’s next
president,” board chairman Robert H. Schottenstein said. “He is exactly the right leader at the right moment in
the university’s history as we address the challenges of affordability and access, while building on the already
strong momentum we have generated at Ohio State in increasing the university’s academic excellence.”
Drake was recommended to the Board of Trustees by an 18-member search committee, chaired by trustee
Jeffrey Wadsworth. He will begin work as president on June 30.
Wadsworth said that the search committee focused on finding a forward-thinking leader who could further the
university’s progress in teaching and learning, innovation and research, outreach and engagement and
resource stewardship.
“The charge to members of the Presidential Search Committee was to find a leader with vision, someone who
could lead a highly complex organization, who had a deep understanding of university culture and superb
leadership skills,” Wadsworth said. “In Michael Drake, we have surely found that person.”
As chancellor of UC Irvine, Drake has been responsible for substantial increases in the institution’s academic
breadth and reach. He oversaw the creation of the first new public law school in California in more than 40
years, and successfully led the launch of several new programs in public health, pharmaceutical sciences and
nursing science. The UC Irvine School of Education also was established under his leadership.
“It is a tremendous honor to be asked to serve as president of The Ohio State University,” said Drake. “The
university embodies and defines the mission of a modern land-grant institution. In every sense one can imagine,
the university is demonstrating national leadership in developing the model for public higher education. I am
thankful for the board’s confidence and eager to begin my duties.”
Drake will help guide Ohio State’s ongoing $2.5 billion But for Ohio State Campaign. One key component of that
campaign is to provide scholarships and financial aid opportunities to ensure education is affordable. Drake
participated in a similar campaign at UC Irvine, leading 50 cyclists on a 25-mile bicycle tour to support higher
education as part of the University of California’s Promise for Education.
Deborah Jones Merritt, convener of the Presidential Search Advisory Subcommittee and the John Deaver
Drinko-Baker and Hostetler Chair in Law, underscored Drake’s deep academic experience. “In Michael V.
Drake, we have a president whose qualities surpass the ambitious list of attributes we were looking for in Ohio
State’s next leader. Dr. Drake is an inclusive leader and acclaimed scholar. He cares deeply about faculty, staff,
students and the community. Those are the qualities that will build on our momentum and lead us forward at
this moment of promise,” said Merritt.
Before becoming chancellor at Irvine, Drake served as vice president for health affairs for the University of
California system (2000–2005), overseeing academic program policy for the system’s 15 health science
schools. He directed the special research programs in tobacco, breast cancer and HIV/AIDS; co-chaired the
California/Mexico Health Initiative; launched the PRIME (Program In Medical Education) initiative to train
physicians to care for underserved populations statewide; and founded the California Health Benefits Review
Program. Prior to that, he spent more than 20 years on the faculty of the UC San Francisco School of Medicine,
ultimately becoming the Steven P. Shearing Professor of Ophthalmology and senior associate dean.
Drake has received numerous honors and awards for teaching, public service and groundbreaking research.
His accolades include the Burbridge Award for Public Service, the Asbury Award (clinical science), the Michael
J. Hogan Award (laboratory science), the UCSF School of Medicine Clinical Teaching Award, the S.J. Kimura
Teaching Award, the UCSF School of Medicine Alumnus of the Year Award and the Gold-Headed Cane Society
Speaker’s Cane, among others.
He has served as trustee and president of the Alpha Omega Alpha Honor Medical Society and as chair of the
Board of Trustees of the Association of Academic Health Centers. Drake is also on the NCAA Board of
Directors, which brings together 18 university chief executives and acts as the leading governing body for
intercollegiate athletics.
He is an alumnus of Stanford University (A.B.) and UC San Francisco (M.D.). Drake’s wife Brenda, who holds
degrees from Stanford (A.B.) and UC Berkeley (J.D.), is an attorney and community leader. She has led several
foundations and nonprofit agencies, serving as either a trustee or executive director. The couple are the parents
to two grown sons.
The Presidential Search Committee began its efforts last summer. The committee sought input and guidance
from faculty members, elected student leaders, staff, senior administrators, alumni and community members.
An Advisory Subcommittee held more than 30 forums across the state to identify the qualities desired in Ohio
State’s next president. Early in the search process, the Board of Trustees also sponsored a Symposium on the
University Presidency, during which current and former leaders of four prominent universities gathered at Ohio
State to provide insight on the modern university presidency.