Prof. I.L. Rensburg


Ihron Rensburg is the Vice Chancellor and Principal of the University of Johannesburg where he has stewarded the university during its demanding and novel merger. He was previously (2001-2006) Chief Executive: Strategic Corporate Services at the South African Broadcasting Corporation, in which capacity he served as Chairman of the National Broadcasting Association (South Africa), President of the Southern Africa Broadcasters Association and Founder of the continental African Broadcasting Union. He is widely known for his policy, strategy, leadership and managerial skills, ably demonstrated during his stewardship of South Africa’s post-apartheid education policy, legislation and programmes. As Deputy Director General of the country’s national Department of Education (1995-2001) he led several teams that designed and created the new system of national and provincial education departments, designed and implemented the new National Curriculum for Schools, and developed various policies and legislation for school, further and higher education. It is because of this knowledge, experience and insight that the Faculty of Education at the University of Johannesburg appointed him Honorary Professor (2007). Professor Rensburg was an anti-apartheid activist and leader (1976-2004), and during this time spearheaded the creation of local, regional and national teachers’ and students’ movements, and was elected leader in various civic organizations at local, regional and national levels. Prof Rensburg holds the Doctor of Philosophy degree in International Development Education at Stanford University, USA., where he completed his dissertation, with distinction, titled “Collective Identity and Public Policy: From Resistance to Reconstruction in South Africa, 1986-1995”. He holds an MA degree in Political and Organisational Sociology, also from Stanford University, USA, and the B. Pharmacy degree from Rhodes University. In 2004 he completed the Global Executive Development Programme at the Graduate Institute of Business Science of the University of Pretoria, where completed his dissertation, with distinction, titled, “Unleashing Peak Performance and Resilience in Times of Great Challenge: How True Leaders Make the Difference.” Prof Rensburg has won many fellowships and academic awards, including the Ford Foundation, the Human Sciences Research Council, the W.K. Kellogg Foundation, Merck, Sharpe & Dohme Pharmaceuticals, and Rhodes University. He was also awarded the Metropolitan Eastern Cape Award in 2006 for his contribution to post-apartheid education reconstruction and development. He serves in a non-executive capacity in many non-governmental organizations, including the READ Foundation (Chairperson) and the Council of Leaders of the Bethesda Methodist Mission, Berea, Johannesburg (Chairperson). Prof Rensburg is married to Sizeka, and the couple have a son, Lizolethu who is 12 years old.

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