Former U.S. Education Secretary John B. King Jr. steps into the role of Chancellor of the SUNY system starting in January 2023. King led the U.S. Department of Education from January 2016 to January 2017 after previously serving as acting deputy secretary under Arne Duncan. Prior to joining the Department of Education during the Obama administration, King was the New York State education commissioner from 2011 to 2014.

Following his stint at the Department of Education, King served as president and CEO of the Education Trust, a nonprofit organization focused on equitable academic achievement.

King replaces interim chancellor Deborah Stanley, who has led SUNY following the resignation of Jim Malatras in late 2021. Malatras stepped down amid allegations of a toxic management style and controversy over his close ties to disgraced former New York governor Andrew Cuomo, for whom he previously worked.