Dr. Wendy Fletcher is the President and Vice-Chancellor of Renison University College, affiliated with the University of Waterloo, having served in this role since August 2014. She is also Professor of Religious Studies and Social Work. Prior to joining the University of Waterloo Wendy served first as Dean and then Principal of Vancouver School of Theology for 14 years. Previous to those roles, she worked as a lecturer and then professor for 11 years with Huron University College at Western University. She earned her PhD from the University of St. Michael’s College at the University of Toronto in 1993.
Dr. Fletcher’s areas of specialization include the history of race and racism in Canada, the intersection of culture and Christianity in the 20th century – including the story of gender and women’s experience in religious leadership, the history of colonization and its impact on Canadian First Nations, and the decline of Christianity in the North American culture. She has authored a variety of books, book chapters, and articles over the course of her career. Her most recent books, both published by Oxford University press, have been released spring 2018: “Christianity in World Religions” 5th edition”, and “Space for Race: Decoding Issues of Race, Belonging and Multi- Culturalism in Canada and Beyond”.
As an educator, she has developed special relationships with a number of Canadian First Nations, having been adopted into two of them.
Dr. Fletcher is known for her collegial leadership style and her capacity in inter-cultural work.
Within Dr. Fletcher’s tenure, Renison’s accomplishments have been noteworthy and include the restructuring of academic life to provide greater support to research and students, reorganization of financial management with renewed consultative and transparent processes, considerable expansion of non-degree programs in numbers of students and places in the world from which they hail, revitalization of degree work including hiring of the VP, Academic and Dean and several tenure track faculty who, with the benefit of increased Renison internal funding, have produced significant publications, and achieved external research funding.
With Dr. Fletcher’s guidance, Renison is well positioned to live yet more deeply into its mission of providing outstanding opportunities for learning and scholarship through an interactive, inclusive environment that encourages intellectual curiosity, respect for diversity, understanding among people, and service to others.
In addition to her academic and administrative successes, Dr. Fletcher is also an accomplished artist. Several recent exhibitions of her work have developed themes identified in her academic work: namely conversations between Confucian, Western, and Indigenous cultures as communication across difference toward a more liveable world. Her work can be viewed at wendylfletcher.com.