According to Dr. Chameau, "Until recently, I believed I would complete my career at Caltech and retire in Pasadena. I did not expect, however, to be presented with a unique and life-changing opportunity to lead KAUST. Like many other academics around the world, I heard about KAUST not too long after it was founded and was impressed with the clarity of the vision to establish a 21 st century university that serves as a beacon for learning and research and for contributions that both make to human welfare. As I considered accepting the position at KAUST, and spoke with members of the Board and the academic leadership, I was impressed by the dedication of effort and resources to realize that vision and the attention paid to establishing a culture of excellence."
Dr. Chameau added, "Because of its unique location, and its charter as a new international center of learning and research, KAUST is positioned to have a dramatic impact on the Kingdom and the world. For that reason, it is more than a university; it is an undertaking of historic importance. I will dedicate my energy to lead it toward achieving its bold vision."
Mr. Andrew Gould, the Chairman of BG Group and former CEO of Schlumberger, led the search committee of the Board. Mr. Gould said, "Jean-Lou Chameau quickly emerged as the ideal leader for KAUST and I am tremendously pleased that he has accepted the position."
The search committee's sentiments were echoed by other Board members as well. Charles Vest, the President of the US National Academy of Engineering, former President of MIT and a member of the KAUST Board of Trustees, said: "Jean-Lou Chameau is one of the world's most respected academic leaders. He was remarkably accomplished at Caltech and Georgia Tech. He has always been global in his outlook and perspective. I can think of no one better prepared to lead KAUST to fulfilling its goals."KAUST was founded as an international graduate research university in 2007 and enrolled its first students in 2009. The third class of MS students graduated, along with the first ten PhD graduates of KAUST, in December 2012. SOURCE King Abdullah University of Science and Technology (KAUST)