President & Vice Chancellor

Dr. Moira McPherson

Dr. Moira McPherson, President of Lakehead University

Dr. Moira McPherson was installed as Lakehead University’s eighth President & Vice-Chancellor in September 2018, after serving as Interim President & Vice-Chancellor between January 2018 and September 2018. Prior to that, she served in the Office of the Provost and Vice-President Academic since 2011, where she provided strategic leadership for institutional visioning for academic and community connections, international recruitment and partnerships, as well as program development, accreditations, and resource allocations.

Dr. McPherson began her progressive career at Lakehead University in 1987 as an Assistant Professor in the Department of Physical Education and Athletics. After seven successful years as Director of the School of Kinesiology where she established a strong reputation as a dynamic applied scientist and coach facilitator, Dr. McPherson’s effective collaborative leadership approach led her to being named Associate Vice-President (Academic), a position that saw her design and implement some pivotal new academic processes to achieve the University’s academic goals. After stepping in to serve as Acting Vice-President (Academic) in 2010, she was appointed Deputy Provost in 2011, and subsequently appointed as Provost & Vice-President (Academic) in 2014.

Dr. McPherson’s understanding of, and commitment to Lakehead University continues to be demonstrated through her capacity for strategic leadership, a purposeful dedication to students, and her influence on several high impact projects. These projects include the Lakehead University-Georgian College Partnership, a collaboration that is designed to meet the needs of students and employers in Simcoe County; the Gichi Kendaasiwin Centre, a capital project to support a vibrant Indigenous student, faculty and staff presence and foster greater connections with communities; and Lakehead’s immersive technology initiative, Lakehead’s distance delivery experiences designed to connect learners in rural and remote communities, and now around the world.

Dr. McPherson led the development and implementation of Lakehead University’s 2012-2017 Academic Plan, the University’s transition to the Institutional Quality Assurance process, and to a Strategic Enrolment Management Framework. She has led the development of the University’s Strategic Mandate Agreements, and established and maintains oversight on the implementation of the Integrated Planning and Budgeting Process. Her leadership continues to ensure the University’s strategic priorities are embraced and realized through its Strategic and Academic Plans.

Dr. McPherson served two terms on the Ontario Universities Council on Quality Assurance, and was a member of the Executive Committee for the Ontario Council of Academic Vice-Presidents. She is currently a member of the COU Executive Heads, and of Universities Canada’s International and Governance Committees.

Dr. McPherson’s active involvement in foundations and other organizations includes her work with The McConnell Foundation’s Initiative on Regional Reconciliation and as a signatory on the Presidents Climate Emergency Collaboration, and as Member of the Regional Advisory Group for the Intra-American Organization for Higher Education (IOHE).

Dr. McPherson holds a PhD specializing in Applied Biomechanics from the University of Alberta, and has been regularly sought out for her scholarly and professional expertise in applied kinematic and biomechanical skill analyses by both national and international organizations.


Office of the President
p: 807-343-8200
Thunder Bay Campus – UC 2009C

Executive Assistant to the President
Rosanna Scaffeo
p: 807-766-7276

Chief of Staff
Toby Goodfellow
p: 807-343-3848