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About the Provost


The provost works to maintain and enhance the university’s excellence in teaching, scholarship and outreach, and is responsible for strategic planning and budgeting, tenure and promotion, academic and research initiatives, and general academic supervision of the Ithaca campus.

The provost acts as the university’s chief academic officer and chief operations officer, and serves as the president’s first deputy officer. The provost oversees all academic programs and units of the university, other than those reporting to the provost for medical affairs.

In carrying out these responsibilities, the provost works directly with the deans of the colleges, schools, and faculties and with the vice provosts as well as other members of the provost’s executive staff.

Provost Michael I. Kotlikoff, V.M.D., Ph.D.

Michael I. Kotlikoff
Michael I. Kotlikoff

Michael I. Kotlikoff, professor of molecular physiology, became the 16th provost of Cornell University on August 1, 2015. A member of the Cornell faculty since 2000, he most recently served as the Austin O. Hooey Dean of Veterinary Medicine.

As dean (2007–2015), Kotlikoff initiated a comprehensive strategic plan to enhance the College of Veterinary Medicine’s programs in education, delivery of animal health care, and research, and he launched an $87 million capital project to upgrade infrastructure and teaching facilities and enable an increase in the pre-clinical class size. Throughout his tenure he oversaw an increase in diversity of the faculty, staff, and college administration; the expansion of clinical training opportunities for veterinary students; and a reorganization of the Cornell University Hospital for Animals. He also focused on expanding basic and clinical research programs and promoting translational linkages and interdisciplinary research.

Kotlikoff was recruited to Cornell in 2000 from the University of Pennsylvania, where he was Professor and Chair of the Department of Animal Biology, to become founding chair of the Department of Biomedical Sciences and chair of the Mammalian Genomics Life Science Initiative. He established and served as the first director of the Cornell Core Transgenic Mouse Facility and has served on or chaired many university committees, including the Local Advisory Committee of the Faculty, the Institute for Biotechnology and Life Science Technologies Scientific Advisory Committee, the Provost’s Graduate Field Task Force, and the Provost’s Budget Model Task Force, as well as numerous NIH committees and editorial boards.

The Kotlikoff research laboratory, which has been continuously funded by the NIH for over 30 years, is internationally recognized in the area of cardiovascular biology. As provost, Kotlikoff continues to maintain his laboratory.

Kotlikoff received his B.A. (literature) and V.M.D. degrees from the University of Pennsylvania and his Ph.D. in Physiology from the University of California, Davis.

History of Cornell’s Provosts