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Susan Wente

Nicholas S. Zeppos, Chancellor at Vanderbilt University, is stepping down on Aug. 15 for health reasons. Current Provost and Vice Chancellor of Academic Affairs, Susan R. Wente, will succeed him as interim chancellor. A national search, led by Board of Trust Chairman Bruce R. Evans, will be conducted for Zeppos’ permanent successor. Evans is also a senior advisor at Summit Partners and an Analog Devices Inc. board member.

Zeppos, who guided the university through the Great Recession, left a legacy of commitment to diversity and access to education. He started Opportunity Vanderbilt, a financial aid program which replaced loans with scholarships, and created the roles of vice chancellor for equity, diversity and inclusion; and chief diversity officer.

A biomedical scientist, Wente was appointed provost in 2014, overseeing faculty, staff, programming and initiatives for Vanderbilt’s 10 schools and colleges. Before joining Vanderbilt, she served on the faculty at Washington University in St. Louis from 1993 to 2002.

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