Willihnganz helped unveil her portrait, which will grace the entrance to the hall until her retirement from the post. At that point, it will hang inside the Grawemeyer rotunda, along with portraits of UofL’s previous provosts.

Willihnganz thanked her staff and praised the entire faculty for academic improvements at UofL since her 2002 appointment. She added that the Hall of Provosts actually is a tribute to the many faculty who have contributed to the university’s growth as an academic institution.

“We can never forget the central thing a university does is to educate people,” she said. “The provost gets to be the face of the important role that faculty play.”

Ramsey compared Willihnganz to a successful coach, saying the provost “is the one who calls the plays and makes things happen at the university.”

He noted that he met Willihnganz while interviewing for the acting presidency in 2002.

“I’ve been thankful for that day ever since,” he said.

Willihnganz is UofL’s fourth provost. Portraits of her predecessors will be unveiled at a later date.

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John Drees
John Drees is a 32-year veteran in the Office of Communications and Marketing. As interim senior associate vice president/director of campus communication, he works closely with the president, provost and other senior administrators, oversees the Office of Communications and Marketing, including media relations, marketing, broadcast, social media, internal communication, crisis communication, visitor services and special events and activities. A former sports editor for the Voice Newspapers, he was a regular contributor to a variety of publications, including the Kentucky Sports Report and the Courier-Journal. A poor but enthusiastic golfer, he is an avid Cardinal sports fan. He also loves the Detroit Lions, so pity him.