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October 6, 2015

McKain Named Associate V.P. for University Communications

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John McKain, assistant dean of communications for the College of Human Ecology, will become the next associate vice president for university communications, the University announced Thursday.

McKain, who will assume the position Oct. 19, succeeds Tracy Vosburgh, who departed Cornell last month to serve as the senior associate vice president for university relations at Virginia Tech.

McKain began working at Cornell in 2006 for Alumni Affairs and Development and transitioned to his role in the College of Human Ecology in 2011, according to a University press release. His experience in the fields of marketing communications and media relations spans over two decades.

In his role as assistant dean in the College of Human Ecology, McKain “developed a communications and media strategy integrating strategic messaging” for multiple platforms, according to the release. Also, under his leadership, press and media coverage of faculty and students in the human ecology college in “major news media” tripled.

His responsibilities as associate vice president will include overseeing a staff of 50 people, as well as “promoting and raising” interest in and visibility of the Cornell brand, according to the University.

In the release, McKain said he was “thrilled” to be chosen for the position.

“It has been an honor and a privilege to serve the university,” McKain said.

Joel Malina, vice president for university relations, said he is looking forward to seeing McKain — who will serve on his leadership team — employ his numerous skills in the position.

“I have long been impressed with John’s results-driven approach to communications — reflecting both substantive skill as well as an emphasis on collegiality and partnership,” Malina said in the release.

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