University of Illinois names new chancellor for Urbana campus

Dr. Robert J. Jones (Photo courtesy of SUNY-Albany)

University of Illinois President Tim Killeen has announced the selection of Dr. Robert J. Jones as the new chancellor for the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, pending approval by the Board of Trustees. Dr. Jones currently serves as president of the State University of New York at Albany, one of the SUNY system’s leading research universities. He is a highly experienced and accomplished scientist and research university leader.

Dr. Jones has been at the helm at Albany since 2013. His tenure there follows a 34-year career at the University of Minnesota, a Big Ten land-grant institution where he began as a faculty agronomist and rose through a series of academic administrative appointments, serving as senior vice president for academic administration at the University of Minnesota system from 2004- 2013.

A native of Georgia, Dr. Jones earned a bachelor’s degree in agronomy from Fort Valley State College and a master’s degree in crop physiology from the University of Georgia; he received a doctorate in crop physiology from the University of Missouri. Dr. Jones began his academic career as a faculty member at Minnesota and has become an internationally respected authority on plant physiology. He also is a fellow of the American Society of Agronomy and the Crop Science Society of America.

Dr. Jones would be the first African-American appointed Urbana chancellor since the office was created in 1967.

Dr. Jones will be introduced to the campus community at 9 a.m. on Wednesday, July 20, in the Illini Union Ballroom