Gordon Barnhart

    Dr. Gordon Barnhart

    Interim President and Vice-Chancellor

    About the Interim President


    Dr. Gordon Barnhart, CM, SOM, PhD, is the interim president and vice-chancellor of the University of Saskatchewan, a position he began on May 22, 2014. President Barnhart is a well-regarded historian and expert on the Canadian parliamentary process. He shares many connections with Saskatchewan and Saskatchewan’s university.

    President Barnhart completed his Bachelor of Arts (Honours) in history at the U of S in 1967, a masters degree from the University of Regina in 1977, and in 1998 received his PhD in history from the U of S. From 2000 to 2005, he served the University of Saskatchewan in the role of university secretary, a position in which he was responsible for duties related to university governance. Since 2012, he has been an adjunct professor in the College of Arts and Science.

    President Barnhart has served the province of Saskatchewan extensively during his career, most notably as Saskatchewan’s 20th lieutenant governor from 2006 until 2012. His experience in government includes 20 years as clerk of the Saskatchewan Legislature and five years as clerk of the Canadian Senate. In addition to his work as a consultant to strengthen democratic governance in countries around the world, he has also written numerous books including:

    • Peace, Progress and Prosperity
    • Saskatchewan's Premiers of the Twentieth Century,
    • Building for the Future: a photo journal of Saskatchewan's Legislative Building, and
    • Parliamentary Committees: Enhancing Democratic Governance.

    In 2014, President Barnhart was named as a member of the Order of Canada. In 2006, President Barnhart received the province’s highest honour, the Saskatchewan Order of Merit. The U of S named him one of its 100 Alumni of Influence in 2007 during the institution’s centennial, he received the 2014 Alumni of Influence from the College of Arts and Science and, in 2013, he was awarded the Peter Lougheed Award for Leadership in Public Policy.

    A passionate advocate for education and leadership, President Barnhart established the Lieutenant Governor’s Leadership Forum to inspire high school students to rise to the challenge of leadership. He is a member of the Board of Canada's National History Society.

    Barnhart was born and raised in the Saskatchewan community of Saltcoats, and he and his wife Naomi, now living in Saskatoon, have three children and five grandchildren.