The University of Arizona

UA President Ann Weaver Hart to be Inaugurated Nov. 30

By Shelley Shelton, University Communications | November 26, 2012

The ceremony - free and open to the public - will run from 3-5 p.m. in Centennial Hall. There will be no simulcast or live broadcast of the inauguration.

UA President Ann Weaver Hart
UA President Ann Weaver Hart

Ann Weaver Hart will speak about the University of Arizona's foundations and its future when she is inaugurated as the UA's 21st president during a ceremony this week.

"I hope to leave our students, friends, colleagues, neighbors, faculty, regents and distinguished guests with the conviction that to survive is to evolve," said Hart, who started at the UA in July after serving as president of Temple University for six years. She will deliver her remarks during the Nov. 30 ceremony, which will be held in Centennial Hall from 3-5 p.m.

"We will find new ways of building public-private partnerships, identify and develop new revenue sources, and constantly seek ways to be more efficient and effective at teaching, discovery, inspiration and dedicated service to the state of Arizona."

Hart, who succeeded Robert N. Shelton, also will note the UA's past successes. "Speaking with clear logic and an unwavering voice, in this inauguration I will also articulate a shared vision, one of whose themes is to acknowledge that our founding principles have served us well, and that the University of Arizona will continue to build on them," she said.

A seven-person planning committee is coordinating details for Hart's inauguration, which will be celebrated throughout the afternoon with a luncheon, robed procession, the ceremony itself and a reception. The event is free and open to the public.

"We're dedicating the entire day to the inauguration," said planning committee chairman Jory Hancock, dean of the College of Fine Arts.

Past inaugurations have included events spread out over several days. Holding all of the activities on a single day makes it easier for people to be part of the activities and it saves money, he said.

Among the guests expected to attend the ceremony are members of the Arizona Board of Regents; the mayors of Tucson and Phoenix; administrators from Pima Community College and Maricopa Community College; a representative for K-12 public schools; and speakers from the Associated Students of the University of Arizona, the Graduate and Professional Student Council, the Staff Advisory Council, the Appointed Professionals Advisory Council and the Faculty Senate.

"It will be lots of different speakers who offer their perspective and their congratulations to the president," Hancock said.

Several past UA presidents also are expected to attend.

A color guard will post the colors, and there will be a Native American blessing as well as performances by the Pride of Arizona marching band, the Arizona Orchestra and the Arizona Choir, plus a dramatic recitation from faculty members in the College of Humanities.

In addition to being entertaining, the performances "are relevant. They're really (there) to further the message and support the message," Hancock said.

The event will include a passing of the presidential medallion, which he likened to a passing of the torch to Hart.

"That's going to be a really dramatic moment," he said.

A reception featuring performers from the Tucson community will take place on the lawn of the Arizona State Museum across the street from Centennial Hall after the ceremony ends at 5 p.m. Fifth-grade mariachis from Davis Elementary School will perform, as will Barbea Williams and her African dance ensemble – which includes children – and Japanese taiko drummers.

"The University is part of this community, and we want to include them in the celebration and invite them to campus," Hancock said. With the UA as the state's land-grant university, "the whole notion of community engagement is reinforced by inviting community groups to the campus for this important ceremony."

Faculty and staff are invited to don robes and join in the procession to Centennial Hall.

The Faculty Center is hosting a luncheon for faculty from 1-2:15 p.m. in the South Ballroom of the Student Union Memorial Center. Robing for faculty will take place there after the luncheon. Faculty do not need to attend the luncheon in order to robe and participate in the procession, which will leave the ballroom at 2:30 p.m.

Other employees will robe and leave from the Gallagher Theater in the Student Union Memorial Center. They should be present, in robe, by 2:15 p.m.

The processions will converge at Old Main before heading to Centennial Hall.

All faculty and staff should RSVP by Friday to the Faculty Center at facultycenter@email.arizona.edu if they plan to join the procession. Faculty should also indicate whether they plan to attend the luncheon.

Anyone not participating in the procession must be seated by 3 p.m. in Centennial Hall. There is no reserved seating, so seats will be available on a first-come, first-served basis.

Additionally, Hancock said, there will be no simulcast or live broadcast of the inauguration.

"If people want to see this, they need to be present in the hall," he said.

Free parking will be available in the Tyndall Garage at Tyndall Avenue and Fourth Street. There will be shuttles for those who need help getting to Centennial Hall from there. The shuttles will run until 6:30 p.m. so people can attend the reception after the ceremony.