After 30 years of service, culminating with oversight of all campus spaces, Bollier will retire early next year.
John Bollier, vice president for campus facilities and development, who oversees the construction and renovation of the physical spaces of the University, will retire at the start of the spring semester.
University President Peter Salovey and Vice President Jack Callahan announced Bollier’s retirement in a November email to professors and staff at Yale. Bollier worked at the university for nearly three decades, and in his current role oversaw the construction of a series of major campus expansions, including the construction of the Tsai Center for Innovation Thinking at Yale, the Yale Science Building and renovation of the Humanities Quadrangle. . He will step down as vice-president on January 14, 2022.
“Since joining Yale in 1992, John has been instrumental in the development and expansion of our campus and physical factory to support Yale’s mission of education, research, preservation and practice,” wrote Salovey. and Callahan in the email. “John leaves a lasting legacy at Yale; our campus is more dynamic, sustainable and connected thanks to his leadership.
Bollier began his career at Yale in medical school, first as a facility capital project manager and then as the medical school facility operations group leader. In 2008, he began leading the campus-wide implementation of planning and capital projects, and in 2018, he assumed his current role.
In an email to the News, Bollier spoke about his legacy at Yale, the impact of the pandemic on his role and the challenges his successor is likely to face.
Describing his greater pride in his most recent role, Bollier wrote: “First, working with L35 [Local-35 Union] leadership to achieve a more effective union-management relationship than 30 years ago. Second, after extensive renovations and new construction, the campus now feels more connected and vibrant than it did 30 years ago. [ago]. “
He also explained the impact of the pandemic on his work, as well as his understanding of the role of physical spaces on campus.
In particular, he said the pandemic had increased his appreciation of outdoor spaces as alternative locations for gatherings to account for social distancing.
“Operationally, the facilities needed to develop work processes to keep our employees and the community safe, while also performing the cleaning and maintenance work necessary to support campus operations,” Bollier wrote, reflecting on the effects of the pandemic. “Some planning issues regarding the campus reoccupancy in fall 2020 were just as difficult, such as determining the occupancy of all teaching spaces given the size, shape and CVC available in these areas. spaces. “
The role has also been more difficult over the past two years, he said. Some of these challenges include stopping construction altogether at the onset of the pandemic to meet public safety regulations and, more recently, supply chain issues. Despite the setbacks, Bollier said he and his team have adapted well to it.
Salovey further explained that Bollier’s extensive academic background made him uniquely qualified for this role.
“He is truly unique among the people who are in charge of university buildings and grounds in that he has a university education in architecture, a university education in engineering and a university education in business management,” Salovey said in an interview. “And I think that made him really well suited for a position that will determine the look and functionality of our campus.”
Salovey also said that the many projects overseen by Bollier have made the campus “more integrated [and] … welcoming.
Going forward, Salovey noted that one of the main goals of Bollier’s successor will be building new spaces for science and engineering on Science Hill. He also noted that much of the medical school is housed in old and “suboptimal” buildings and that the Drama School and the School of Public Health are both housed in a number. of buildings – consolidating them will be a goal of Bollier’s successor.
The University has brought in headhunters to find a successor and is hoping the position will be filled by the end of the spring semester, according to Salovey.