ATTORNEY-AT-LAW Michael Vaccianna is the new chairman of the 16-member Board of Management of the all-boys institution, Kingston College. He replaces fellow lawyer, Professor Stephen Vasciannie.
Vaccianna's appointment took effect on July 23, 2012 and runs through to December 31, 2014.
The former board chairman of the 87-year-old school is now Jamaica's Ambassador to the United States, based in the US capital of Washington, DC.
"The Honourable Minister of Education has appointed Mr Michael Vaccianna to serve as chairman of the Board of Management of Kingston College," executive director of the National Council on Education Merris Murray wrote to the new chairman recently.
Vaccianna, the younger brother of former KC Principal Major Vivian Cohen, has been practising law for several years and has sat on and chaired many State boards and agencies over the years.
He leads a board that includes Lt Col Oscar Darby, head of Jamaica's Civil Aviation Authority, Rt Rev Robert Thompson, Anglican Bishop of Kingston, financial analyst Errol Gregory, a former teacher at KC and brother of Anglican Bishop of Jamaica Rt Rev Howard Gregory; Dr Peter John Gordon, Rev Jim Parkes, Dr Hugh Vaughn and Dr Ray Fraser.
Vaccianna, in an interview with the Jamaica Observer yesterday, said that he had begun to meet some KC stakeholders, although he had not yet convened a meeting of the board.
The veteran attorney said that moving KC forward would be a tough task, but one that he was committed to taking on.
"It will be a challenging assignment. The infrastructure of both campuses require a lot of work," he said of the school, which has locations at 2a North Street and 13 Upper Elletson Road in Central Kingston.
"My emphasis at this time, even before I am fully briefed, is improving the environment in which our academic staff, ancillary staff and students have to work.
"I am looking to the old boys and corporate Jamaica for assistance, because the Government doesn't have the funds to do the things that we need to get done.
"We need to improve the physical environment and infrastructure, improve academic performance, and also improve the sporting facilities, because KC has a great sporting tradition and we need to maintain that," said Vaccianna, who was schooled at KC from 1966 to 1973.
Dr Fraser, president of the KC Old Boys' Association yesterday welcomed Vaccianna's appointment.
"I am sure that the entire KC fraternity looks forward to working with him in his capacity as the new board chairman," Dr Fraser said. "At the same time, we must thank the previous chairman, Professor Vasciannie, now ambassador to Washington, who contributed significantly to the advancement of KC. As the Old Boys' representative on the school board, we anticipate a good working relationship with the new chairman, who is himself an Old Boy.
"KC is at the point of making some significant strides with its infrastructure, including the upgrading of the Douglas Forrest Building, the repair of the historic Hardie House, improvement to the entrance of its North Street Campus, roofing repairs, further work on the sports pavilion, among other things," Dr Fraser said.
KC, on Monday, also announced the appointment of a new head of its football programme, with Old Boy Donovan Hayles replacing Trevor "Jumpy" Harris as coach, following Harris's resignation last week.