Statement by SUNY Board Chairman H. Carl McCall and Chancellor Kristina M. Johnson

August 8, 2018

"We at The State University of New York are deeply saddened over the passing of Dr. Joseph Burke, a dedicated advocate of higher education and learning for the SUNY System. Dr. Burke served as acting system provost in 1985, system provost and vice chancellor for academic affairs from 1986-55, and interim chancellor in 1994. He was also a senior fellow with the Rockefeller Institute’s Higher Education Program and president of SUNY Plattsburgh for over a decade.

Dr. Burke was one of SUNY’s greatest resources, and was always willing and able to provide his expertise and insight when needed. He brought his wealth of knowledge, experience, leadership, and wisdom to every position he held, leaving behind a legacy of accomplishments in crucial areas, such as graduate and doctoral research, as well as system-wide assessment and performance programs.

He was a champion of higher education and we mourn the loss of a dear member of our SUNY family."

About the State University of New York
The State University of New York is the largest comprehensive system of higher education in the United States, with 64 college and university campuses located within 30 miles of every home, school, and business in the state. As of Fall 2017, more than 430,000 students were enrolled in a degree program at a SUNY campus. In total, SUNY served nearly 1.4 million students in credit-bearing courses and programs, continuing education, and community outreach programs in the 2016-17 academic year. SUNY students and faculty across the state make significant contributions to research and discovery, resulting in $1 billion of externally sponsored activity each year. There are 3 million SUNY alumni worldwide, and one in three New Yorkers with a college degree is a SUNY alum. To learn more about how SUNY creates opportunity, visit

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