UMass Dartmouth Chancellor Johnson announces resignation

After a successful three-year tenure, Robert E. Johnson to leave UMass Dartmouth

UMass Dartmouth Chancellor Robert E. Johnson announced today that he will resign as Chancellor, where he has served since 2017. Johnson continues at UMass Dartmouth until August 15, 2020, when he will assume the role of President at Western New England University.

“I am honored and humbled to have led, for three years, this world-class university that prides itself on its ambition, creative thinking, and research breakthroughs,” said Chancellor Johnson. “I reflect fondly on our time together and what we have accomplished since I arrived in July 2017. Together, we developed a shared ambition for the university’s future and have accomplished much.”

“Chancellor Johnson’s entrepreneurial spirit, commitment to student success, and belief in the power of a university to strengthen regional economies through research and engagement have helped create new opportunities for individuals and SouthCoast communities over the last three years,” said UMass System President Marty Meehan. “His leadership, grounded in personal and professional experiences, has been critical to the continued ascension of UMass Dartmouth as a national research university, especially during recent months as UMass and all of higher education have confronted unprecedented challenges.”

Highlights of Chancellor Johnson’s tenure include:

  • The largest research grant in the University’s history - $4.6M from the Office of Naval Research to fund research projects in undersea technologies.
  • Achieving #84 nationwide and #3 in Massachusetts for student social mobility after graduation by U.S. News & World Report.
  • Strengthened connections to the SouthCoast region for student learning experiences and community impact projects.
  • Secured more than $1.2M in funding for the University’s Blue Economy initiative that will create an interconnected marine science and technology corridor in the SouthCoast region.
  • The completion of a new residential and dining complex for incoming first-year students.
  • Research growth across campus, including a 26% increase in new externally funded grant awards from FY18-19.
  • The expansion of the College of Nursing into the College of Nursing & Health Sciences to provide students with interdisciplinary, team-based health care workforce training and education opportunities.

“The state of UMass Dartmouth is strong, and it is positioned well for its next chapter with its next leader. Nothing stops and the journey continues. The university is advancing, the leadership is committed, the employees are resilient, and I could not be prouder of the students,” said Johnson.



Chancellors Office, News and Public Information