Published: Jan. 6, 2020

Chancellor Philip DiStefano has appointed CU system Vice President, University Counsel and Secretary of the Board of Regents Patrick O’Rourke interim executive vice chancellor and chief operating officer beginning Feb. 20. 

Patrick O'Rourke

Patrick O'Rourke

“Patrick has a wealth of experience and expertise supporting our university, and he has worked with the Boulder campus on many issues,” said DiStefano. “I have asked Patrick to continue to build upon the strong foundation of our Strategic Resources and Support team and to collaborate to move our strategic imperatives and Academic Futures priorities forward.”  

O’Rourke will oversee all areas currently encompassing Strategic Resources and Support (SRS), including enrollment management; finance and business strategy (CFO); human resources (CHRO); information technology (CIO); infrastructure and sustainability; institutional equity and compliance; integrity, safety and compliance; strategic relations and communications; and government, community and external relations.

“I am very grateful to the Board of Regents and University of Colorado for the experience I have gained over the past 14 years and the confidence the regents placed in me,” said O’Rourke.  “I am excited and honored to join the operations team on the Boulder campus and look forward to joining Provost Moore and Chancellor DiStefano in creating tomorrow’s leaders, being innovative and positively impacting humanity.” 

The CU Board of Regents will begin discussions about his replacement at its retreat this week.

“Patrick has been integral to CU’s success in recent years and has been a tremendous asset to the Board of Regents. While the board will have big shoes to fill, we’re happy that he will stay in the CU family,” said Glen Gallegos, chair of the board. “We thank him for his excellent service to the board and wish him the best in his new role.”

O'Rourke has served as vice president, university counsel and secretary of the Board of Regents since 2012, where he has been responsible for coordinating the university’s legal affairs and assisting the Board of Regents in its governance role. He has been with the university since 2005 and previously was responsible for overseeing the university’s litigation. O’Rourke teaches as an adjunct faculty member at the University of Colorado School of Law and the Colorado School of Public Health on the Anschutz Medical Campus.

O'Rourke received his undergraduate degree from Creighton University and his law degree from The Georgetown University Law Center. He is active in the community and is a board member of the Denver School of Science and Technology, the Center for Legal Inclusiveness and the Colorado Judicial Institute.

“Patrick has been an important member of my executive team and was invaluable as I transitioned into my role,” said CU President Mark Kennedy. “I appreciate his great service to the university and I’m pleased CU will continue to benefit from his considerable expertise and talent.”

O’Rourke replaces Kelly Fox, who is leaving the university for a position at Georgia Tech later this month.

DiStefano said he will make a determination regarding a permanent replacement by August.