THE current principal and vice-chancellor of St Andrews University is to become the first female head of Oxford.
Dr Louise Richardson, 56, is to leave Scotland’s oldest university for the top job at the University of Oxford.
Originally from Ireland and married with two children, she previously held a senior role at Harvard University.
If she is formally adopted as the 272nd vice-chancellor, Prof Richardson will take up the role in January 2016.
She will replace Andrew Hamilton, who is moving to New York University.
Dr Richardson, an internationally renowned terrorism and security studies scholar, said: “Oxford is one of the world’s great universities. I feel enormously privileged to be given the opportunity to lead this remarkable institution during an exciting time for higher education.”
The nominating committee was chaired by the chancellor of Oxford University, Lord Patten of Barnes, who said: “The panel was deeply impressed by Professor Richardson’s strong commitment to the educational and scholarly values which Oxford holds dear. Her distinguished record both as an educational leader and as an outstanding scholar, provides an excellent basis for her to lead Oxford.”
The senior governor of the University Court of St Andrews, Sir Ewan Brown, said: “Louise Richardson has proved a splendid leader of St Andrews, to which she has made an outstanding contribution over the last seven years. I believe her experience here will stand her in good stead in her new role in Oxford.”