Dr. Santa Ono brings to UBC an extraordinary record of scholarship, teaching, high-level administration, community service, communication, entrepreneurship, music, as well as wonderful human qualities. While he spent much of his career in the US, his Japanese parents found a wonderful welcoming home at UBC and Vancouver in the early 1960s, where Dr. Ono was born.
As an anchor of diversity, inter-cultural understanding, and cross-Pacific dialogue, the Institute of Asian Research is particularly proud to welcome UBC’s second President of Asian heritage. Along with other partners at UBC, IAR has been at the forefront of the movement to acknowledge the contribution and history of Asian Canadians in British Columbia and Canada.
In his first speech at UBC on June 13, 2016, Dr. Ono emphasized his vision of leader as serving the university community, as promoting diversity and engagement with the Aboriginal community, and promoting leading research, teaching, and service.
He noted his plan to continue developing international partnerships in Asia and beyond:
“I will develop partnerships around the world, not only in the United States and North America, but in Europe and in Asia, and Africa. And we will do that, not because it is something I want to do, but because I have to listen to the Deans and the faculty of the university and because it is something they want to do and because it makes sense, strategically, for the university.”
President Ono also concluded his speech by noting the Asia-Pacific positioning of UBC as one of its three core attributes:
“It is such a special university! Not only is it globally renowned and outstanding, it has that aboriginal connection and a partnership that we must grow. And it is part of the Asia/Pacific rim, a growing part of the world’s economy. It is a university that is focused and a city that is focused on sustainability.”
IAR is looking forward to welcoming President Ono and his family, and working with him in fostering the role of UBC as the human hub in the Asia-Pacific region!
Director of the Institute of Asian Research