Provost Cynthia Larive

UCR provost is named chancellor at UC Santa Cruz

Cynthia K. Larive, UCR provost and alumna, will be UCSC's 11th chancellor

May 16, 2019
Author: J.D. Warren
May 16, 2019

UCR Provost and Executive Vice Chancellor Cynthia K. Larive has been appointed the 11th Chancellor of UC Santa Cruz, effective July 1.

"It is a wonderful opportunity for Cindy and a wise selection by President Napolitano, but a bittersweet moment for UCR," UCR Chancellor Kim Wilcox wrote in an email to the UCR campus on Thursday. "Cindy’s thoughtful, gracious, authentic brand of leadership has been a distinguishing feature across the many roles that have led her to this moment."

Larive joined the UCR faculty as a bioanalytical chemistry professor in 2005 and became chair in 2012 of the Department of Chemistry. She was appointed divisional dean for Physical Sciences and Mathematics in the College of Natural and Agricultural Sciences, or CNAS, and served as interim CNAS dean in 2015-16. Cindy became provost after a stint as vice provost for Undergraduate Education.

Among accomplishments during Larive's tenure as provost, she led the campus effort to narrow its ratio of incoming freshmen to transfer students. Following commendable progress toward the goal of one transfer student for every two freshmen admitted, Larive oversaw the creation of academic support and peer mentoring programs to help ensure transfer student success. 

Larive also led the campus in winning reaccreditation by the Western Association of Schools and Colleges and strengthened UCR administration’s commitment to shared governance with the Academic Senate.

"I am deeply humbled, honored, and excited to lead UC Santa Cruz - a campus of the university I love and am greatly indebted to," said Larive, who earned her bachelor’s degree in chemistry from South Dakota State University, her master’s degree in inorganic chemistry from Purdue University, and her PhD in analytical chemistry at UC Riverside. “As a first-generation college student, I experienced firsthand the capacity of higher education institutions – and that of UC in particular – to level the playing field for all students, regardless of their socioeconomic backgrounds, and to positively transform their lives and their futures.”

In his email, Wilcox welcomed campus nominations for an interim provost until Larive's permanent successor is appointed. In concert with the Academic Senate, Wilcox said he hopes to name the interim provost by July 1, and that a national search for a permanent replacement will begin in fall 2019. 

Nominations may be sent to by May 31. More information is available at the Executive Searches website . A reception for Larive is set for Monday, June 10 from 4 to 6 p.m. at the Alumni & Visitors Center. 

Follow this link for a University of California Office of the President story on Larive's appointment.