UNH selects Elizabeth Chilton as university’s next president


Monitor staff

Published: 05-07-2024 11:59 AM

The University of New Hampshire on Tuesday named Elizabeth Chilton, the current chancellor of Washington State University’s flagship campus, as its next president.

Chilton, an anthropologist, has also served as a dean at Binghamton University and as an administrator at University of Massachusetts, Amherst, where she completed her PhD.

Chilton will replace current UNH president James W. Dean, Jr., who announced his retirement last fall after six years at the helm of the university.

“I’ve long admired UNH’s history, vibrant and engaged community, and commitment to student success and scholarship. I look forward to returning to the Northeast to join the Wildcat family and help UNH serve our students and society in pursuit of a prosperous future,” Chilton said in a press release.

Chilton is a scholar of pre-colonial archeology of northeast North America and the author of three books, including one about the native history of Nantucket.

A first generation college student, Chilton received an undergraduate degree in anthropology from the University at Albany, SUNY in 1985. She went on to teach at Skidmore, Harvard and UMass, before entering the administrative ranks in 2012.

Chilton has served as the chancellor of Washington State’s Pullman campus since January 2022.

Chilton was selected for the top UNH role by a 16-member search committee.

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“Dr. Chilton has shown tremendous leadership and strategic vision across the academic and research enterprise, and her career is a testament to the mission of public higher education,” said Jamie Burnett, the vice-chair of the University System of New Hampshire Board of Trustees and chair of the search committee. “She cares deeply about the student experience and is committed to advancing student success at UNH. She has a record of collaboration, lifting up her peers, building partnerships and creating opportunities.”

Chilton will formally begin her new role on July 1.