University of Maine System Trustees extend Chancellor Malloy’s contract

During Malloy’s tenure, the System has advanced student affordability and access and secured historic philanthropic investment and unified accreditation, for which implementation is now underway

Chancellor Malloy
Chancellor Malloy

FORT KENT, Maine — The University of Maine System (UMS) Board of Trustees have agreed to extend Chancellor Dannel Malloy’s contract through June 30, 2027.

The authorization to add two years onto the Chancellor’s current contract, which runs through June 30, 2025, comes the same day Trustees approved a balanced operating budget and one year after Malloy released the System’s first strategic plan in nearly two decades following a process inclusive of more than 1,600 campus and community stakeholders. 

“Under the leadership of Chancellor Malloy and his strong team of presidents and staff, Maine’s public universities have improved educational quality and student outcomes, increased philanthropy and partnerships, and launched innovative new programming to meet the evolving needs of the state’s learners and economy,” said Chair Trish Riley. “Extending the Chancellor’s contract ensures he can continue to move this important work forward and deliver on the real potential of these investments and initiatives to strengthen our System and serve our state.” 

In 2020, Chancellor Malloy led the System to become the first in the nation to unify its individual institutional accreditations, allowing its public universities to more easily collaborate and combine resources to meet student and state needs. For example, in the County where Trustees are meeting today, the University of Maine at Fort Kent now delivers its in-demand nursing program both in the St. John Valley and at the University of Maine at Presque Isle. Those two institutions also share a student financial aid director with the University of Maine (UMaine) and its regional campus in Machias. 

Practical efficiencies like those in a large state with a small, dispersed population are necessary for UMS to maintain campuses in the communities where they are, as is required by State law, while also advancing student affordability and beginning to address a $1.6 billion deferred maintenance backlog across the System from decades of underinvestment. 

Despite demographic declines, UMS experienced enrollment growth in key areas during Chancellor Malloy’s tenure, including a 32% increase in the number of Maine high school students earning free university credit and a 22% gain in graduate enrollment. With now just 54% of Maine high school students going onto college (External Site) but employers expecting more workers with postsecondary degrees and credentials (External Site), Malloy initiated a direct admissions pilot this year, proactively inviting eligible Maine students to enroll without requiring them to submit a traditional application. 

Chancellor Malloy also secured a $240 million challenge grant from the Harold Alfond Foundation (HAF) to accelerate engineering and computing, student success and retention, graduate and professional programs, and Division 1 athletics, a strategic initiative known as UMS TRANSFORMS. At the time, it was the ninth largest commitment ever to a U.S. institution of public higher education and has since been supplemented by $80 million more from HAF. The System is well on its way to raising the required $188 million match for a total investment through UMS TRANSFORMS of $508 million over 12 years.  

Additionally during his tenure, UMaine, which is led by President Joan Ferrini-Mundy, became the first institution in the state to achieve the prestigious Carnegie R1 designation, putting it among the nation’s top 146 highest-performing research universities and attracting more talent and investment here. 

“While we continue to face many challenges, I am proud of the progress Maine’s public universities are making together and excited for our System’s future,” said Chancellor Malloy. “Leading the state’s largest education and economic development enterprise is an honor and a responsibility. Never has the University of Maine System mattered more, and never have we had a greater impact on the prosperity of Maine and its people. Guided by our shared strategic plan and in collaboration with our Board, terrific university presidents, faculty, staff and many external partners, I look forward to continuing our critical work to add value and bring opportunity through public higher education and research to all of Maine and beyond.” 

Malloy became Chancellor in 2019 following more than two decades of public service including as a prosecutor, mayor and two-term Governor of the State of Connecticut. 

Contact: Samantha Warren, University of Maine System Director of External Affairs, 207-632-0389,

About the University of Maine System

Established in 1968, the University of Maine System (UMS) unites seven Maine’s distinctive public universities, comprising 10 campuses and numerous centers, in the common purpose of providing quality higher education while delivering on its traditional tripartite mission of teaching, research, and public service.

In 2020 UMS became the first and only statewide enterprise of public higher education in the country to transition to a unified accreditation for the system. Much different than a merger or consolidation, unified accreditation is a new operating model for the University of Maine System that removes the primary barrier to inter-institutional collaboration.

A comprehensive public institution of higher education, UMS serves more than 30,000 students annually and is supported by the efforts of more than 2,000 full-time and part-time faculty, more than 3,000 regular full-time and part-time staff, and a complement of part-time temporary (adjunct) faculty.

Reaching more than 500,000 people annually through educational and cultural offerings, the University of Maine System also benefits from more than two-thirds of its alumni population residing within the state; more than 123,000 individuals.

The System consists of seven main campuses: The University of Maine (UMaine), including its regional campus the University of Maine at Machias (UMaine Machias); the University of Maine at Augusta (UMA); the University of Maine at Farmington (UMF); the University of Maine at Fort Kent (UMFK), the University of Maine at Presque Isle (UMPI); and the University of Southern Maine (USM). The System also includes a UMA campus in Bangor, USM campuses in Gorham and Lewiston-Auburn, the University of Maine School of Law, and the University of Maine Graduate and Professional Center.