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Lesley Rigg
Chair of the Board
Dean, Faculty of Science, University of Calgary


Rigg is an internationally recognized scholar with more than 18 years of experience working in postsecondary education. She comes to the University of Calgary from Northern Illinois University (NIU) where she was vice-president for research and innovation partnerships (VPR). At Northern Illinois University, Rigg was responsible for the research mission of the university which included maintaining dynamic research programs, partnering with federal laboratories, and supporting the commercialization of scientific inventions. She was the president of the Northern Illinois Research Foundation, the mandate of which is to advance the educational research, public service and economic development mission of NIU.

Rigg earned a bachelor’s degree in geography and environmental studies from York University, a master’s degree in geography from the University of Colorado and a doctorate degree in geography and environmental studies from the University of Melbourne in Australia. She has written and contributed to dozens of peer-reviewed journals, facilitated international workshops, and participated in a variety of panels. Rigg is a former member of the National Committee on the Status of Women in Geography of the Association of American Geographers. In 2014, Rigg received an honorable mention for NIU’s Women Who Make a Difference Award and in 2009, won the Wilma D. Stricklin Award for enhancing the climate on campus for women. Her research interests include biogeography with an emphasis on forest ecosystems and vegetation dynamics.

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Last updated Oct 6, 2019