University President Rev. John I. Jenkins, C.S.C., to step down at end of 2023-24 academic year; Board elects John Veihmeyer to succeed Jack Brennan as Board chair

Author: Notre Dame News

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Rev. John I. Jenkins, C.S.C., announced today that he will step down as president of the University of Notre Dame at the end of the 2023-24 academic year, to return to teaching and ministry at the University. Father Jenkins, the University’s 17th president, has served in the role since 2005.

“Serving as president of Notre Dame for me, as a Holy Cross priest, has been both a privilege and a calling,” Father Jenkins said. “While I am proud of the accomplishments of past years, I am above all grateful for the Trustees, benefactors, faculty, staff, students, alumni and friends who made them possible. There is much to celebrate now, but I believe Notre Dame’s best years lie ahead.”

“Notre Dame is and has been incredibly blessed by Father Jenkins’ courageous and visionary leadership,” said John J. Brennan, chair of the University’s Board of Trustees. “Together with the remarkable leadership team he has assembled, he has devoted himself to advancing the University and its mission, fulfilling the promise he made when he was inaugurated — to work collaboratively to build a great Catholic university for the 21st century. This is an extraordinarily exciting time for Notre Dame, and we are confident that the next leader will take the University to even greater heights of accomplishment.”

Over his 19-year tenure, Father Jenkins is credited with advancing Notre Dame’s mission as a Catholic research university; attracting and supporting superb faculty; fostering dramatic growth in research at the University; securing Notre Dame’s admission in the Association of American Universities (AAU); ensuring the University’s financial strength; admitting a talented, diverse student body; promoting continued excellence in undergraduate instruction; expanding Notre Dame’s global engagement; and offering students an in-person education during the COVID-19 pandemic. A long-time member of the Commission on Presidential Debates, he is recognized nationally as an advocate of civil discourse, and is a leading voice on the future of college athletics.

John Veihmeyer Board of Trustees
John B. Veihmeyer

The University also announced today the election of John B. Veihmeyer, retired chairman of KPMG International, as chair of Notre Dame’s Board of Trustees, effective June 2024. He will serve as vice chair until then.

Veihmeyer will succeed Brennan as chair, who has served as a member of the Board of Trustees since 2009 and was elected chair in 2015. Both serve as Fellows of the University — the 12-member body of lay people and priests from the Congregation of Holy Cross who elect the Trustees, adopt and amend the bylaws and are specifically charged with maintaining Notre Dame’s Catholic character. Brennan will remain on the Board.

Veihmeyer, who joined the University’s Board of Trustees in 2017, is a 1977 graduate of Notre Dame and makes his home in Potomac, Maryland. He currently serves on the board of the Ford Motor Company, and chairs the boards of the Ladies Professional Golf Association (LPGA) and Catholic Charities of Washington, D.C. Veihmeyer and his wife, Beth, a Saint Mary’s College graduate, have three children—a Notre Dame graduate, a Saint Mary’s graduate and a Xavier University graduate.

“I am deeply honored and humbled to be elected Board chair. For all of us who love Notre Dame, it is an incredible privilege to support the University in any capacity, and I am grateful that my fellow Trustees have given me the opportunity to serve them, and Notre Dame,” Veihmeyer said. “Jack Brennan has been an extraordinary leader for Notre Dame and I look forward to continuing to work closely with him over the next eight months.”

Notre Dame’s Board of Trustees was established in 1967 when governance was transferred from the Congregation of Holy Cross to a two-tiered board of lay and religious Trustees and Fellows.

Consistent with the University’s Bylaws, a search is underway for the next president, who will be elected by the University’s Board of Trustees from among the priests of the Congregation of Holy Cross, the University’s founding order.

Originally published by Notre Dame News at on October 13, 2023