The Fiji National University (FNU) Council met on Saturday 01 August and unanimously agreed to appoint Acting Chancellor Tessa Price to assume the role of Acting Vice-Chancellor for one month commencing today Monday 03 August 2020.

Ms Price replaces Professor James Pounder, who completed his term on Friday 31 July 2020. Professor Pounder served as Acting VC for four months. Ms Price will step down from her position as the Acting Chancellor while performing her new role as Acting VC.

“This will allow the FNU Council time to make an appropriate appointment to the Acting Vice-Chancellor position, ahead of a permanent appointee commencing in the Vice-Chancellor role later in the year,” said Ms Price. 

In May 2016, Ms Price was the first woman to be appointed to lead ANZ’s Pacific Business working across 11 countries in geographies as diverse as Guam, Kiribati and Timor.

She is a direct report to the CEO of ANZ New Zealand and currently serves on a number of ANZ Boards including ANZ Pacific Operations, ANZ Guam,  ANZ Vanuatu and ANZ PNG.

Prior to this, Ms Price was Chief of Staff to former CEO of ANZ (Mike Smith) in 2015. In 2012, Ms Price was the first female to be appointed to the role of CEO UDC, an ANZ subsidiary and the largest finance company in New Zealand. Prior to joining ANZ, Ms Price worked for the Commonwealth Bank for over eight years in Brand and Advertising, and she’s had roles with Saatchi & Saatchi, American Express and Esanda.

Ms Price holds a Bachelor of Arts, a Bachelor of Commerce and a Masters of Business Administration (Executive) from the University of New South Wales / The University of Sydney. She has also completed the Massachusetts Institute of Technology Leadership Program in Boston. The Council thanked Professor Pounder for continuing the leadership following the departure of FNU Vice-Chancellor Professor Nigel Healey in March.

“The world is currently going through unprecedented times due to the COVID-19 pandemic, and we would like to thank Professor Pounder for his leadership and commitment that ensured students were able to access learning and teaching through blended mode as well as university operations remain largely uninterrupted.” 

Professor Pounder returns to his substantive position of Pro-Vice-Chancellor Learning and Teaching, while Acting PVC L&T Professor Paul Iji returns to his substantive position of Dean College of Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry (CAFF).

The Acting Dean CAFF Dr Kali Ravuiwasa will return to his position of Associate Dean Learning and Teaching at CAFF. Ms Price met the Senior Management Group this morning. “This arrangement provides me with a great opportunity to get to know each of the SMG members better and understand their aspirations and thoughts regarding how we can together take FNU to the next level. I look forward to working with everyone on the immediate priorities for the University,” commented Ms Price. 

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