The university’s first female chancellor, Dr Lennox was joined by hundreds of guests including First Minister Nicola Sturgeon, Chancellors of Oxford Brookes University, Dame Katherine Grainger, Edinburgh Napier, David Eustace, Salford, Professor Jackie Kay MBE, and of Glasgow University, Sir Kenneth Calman, and students and supporters of GCU at the event in the Saltire Centre.
Chancellor Lennox said: “I am humbled and awed beyond measure. As your Chancellor, I look forward to exploring ways of communication and engagement so we can all be part of the solution to the challenges we face in the 21st Century. Thank you for giving me this opportunity to work with you in this aspirational way. I love Glasgow Caledonian University and the common good we stand for.”
Principal and Vice-Chancellor Professor Pamela Gillies CBE FRSE, said: “Dr Lennox is in complete alignment with the university’s moral compass and shares our deep and abiding commitment to the common good.
“Annie has a strong sense of purpose rooted in a deeply held set of values which fuel the extraordinary energy she quietly applies to promoting social justice, unlocking the talent of others, empowering the powerless and helping the most vulnerable in our world. She is serious about helping to make a difference to the lives of others. Annie has more than realised her dreams in her contribution to the world of music and by her work to make the world a safer, healthier and more just place for everyone, but especially for women and girls. The university community feels deeply privileged to welcome Dr Lennox as our chancellor.”
First Minister Nicola Sturgeon told the audience: “It is a pleasure to be at an event that celebrates the contribution that Glasgow Caledonian University makes to the common good.
“Annie is someone I have admired since before I even went to university. In fact, when I appeared on Desert Island Discs, I chose Sisters are Doin’ It for Themselves, which Annie sang with Aretha Franklin.
“So, this is a genuinely extraordinary moment for me. If you had told me back in 1985 when that song came out that I would one day stand here as Scotland’s first female First Minister to welcome Annie as the first female Chancellor of one of Scotland’s universities I would have been thrilled. She has been a role model to women around the world and I know she will be a role model for all students here at Glasgow Caledonian University.”
Professor Kay MBE, Scotland’s Makar and a GCU Cultural Fellow and Honorary Graduate, read a specially commissioned poem and the chancellor was installed by Rob Woodward, Chair of Court, the university’s governing body.