Thompson Rivers University

TRU appoints respected BC educational leader as new chancellor

February 23, 2024

KAMLOOPS – Thompson Rivers University (TRU) is delighted to announce the appointment of DeDe DeRose as the university’s new chancellor, with her term commencing on March 1.

DeRose, a prominent advocate for Indigenous education and a figure deeply embedded in the educational landscape of British Columbia, steps into this prestigious role with a wealth of experience and a history of significant contributions to Indigenous student success.

Born in Williams Lake to a Secwépemc family, DeDe is a member of the Esk’etemc First Nation. Her Secwépemc name is Tse7ekw te Spi7uw (Sunrise Golden Eagle), which means Divine Spirit giving warmth, light and life.

DeRose’s distinguished career includes her tenure as B.C.’s first superintendent of Aboriginal Achievement and her role as an educator and principal within Kamloops-Thompson School District 73. Her advocacy for the inclusion of Indigenous languages, history, and culture in the curriculum has been instrumental in fostering a more inclusive and comprehensive educational environment.

Marilyn McLean, chair of TRU’s Board of Governors, praised DeRose’s exceptional leadership abilities and her unwavering commitment to educational excellence and community engagement. Brett Fairbairn, TRU president and vice-chancellor, emphasized DeRose’s embodiment of TRU’s core values, particularly her dedication to Indigenous education and her efforts to promote intercultural understanding.

DeRose’s commitment to education extends beyond her professional roles. She has been an influential member of various boards and committees, including the UBC President’s Advisory Board for Indigenous People and the Verna J. Kirkness Foundation. Her work has consistently aimed at improving educational outcomes for Indigenous students and enhancing community involvement in education.

Among her many accolades, DeRose has been recognized for her contributions to education with awards such as the inaugural Teacher Educator Award from the Association of BC Deans of Education. Her appointment as TRU’s new chancellor is a testament to her impactful career and her vision for a future where education is accessible and inclusive for all.

Reflecting on her appointment, DeRose expressed honour and excitement at the opportunity to serve as chancellor. She emphasized the importance of TRU’s role in the community and its commitment to sustainability, excellence, and the provision of a broad range of programs and opportunities for open learning.

As chancellor, DeRose will preside over convocation ceremonies and serve as a member of the university’s board of governors and senate, continuing to inspire and lead in the promotion of education and community development.

DeRose succeeds Nathan Mathew as TRU’s chancellor, whose term has ended. She will be formally installed in a ceremony later this spring.

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