New UC president, former OSU head Michael Drake, will be first person of color to step into role

The University of California has named former Ohio State University president Michael V. Drake to be the next head of the state system.
The University of California has named former Ohio State University president Michael V. Drake to be the 21st president of the state system.

He will be the first person of color to lead the system.

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Drake, 69, spent much of his academic career in the UC system, including a term as chancellor at UC Irvine and as the systemwide vice president for health affairs from 2000 to 2005. He was president of OSU from 2014 until last week.

"Much has changed in the 15 years since I was given the privilege of becoming chancellor at UC Irvine, but not my absolute belief in this great University and its time-honored mission," Drake said in a statement released by the UC system.

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Drake is replacing Janet Napolitano, who announced in September she would step down after seven years as president of the UC system.

The UC board approved Drake's salary at $890,000.

The UC system consists of 10 campuses and more than 280,000 students.

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