ITHACA, NY – Cornell President Elizabeth Garrett, 52, announced earlier this month that she had been diagnosed with colon cancer. It was announced on Monday that Garrett had been released from the ICU following a surgery performed on Friday, Feb. 19.

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Before undergoing her surgery, Garrett officially delegated her responsibilities as president to Cornell Provost Michael Kotlikoff. Kotlikoff had assumed the position of the University’s 16th Provost in October of last year.

Acting President Kotlikoff announced the news, saying that Garrett was released from the Intensive Care Unit and remains in the care of doctors at Weill Cornell Medicine for continuing treatment.

“I remain in touch with her, and she has asked that I convey to the entire Cornell community her appreciation for all the well-wishes and prayers. The outpouring of support has meant so much to her and [husband] Andrei,” wrote Kotlikoff.

Garrett, who assumed the role of Cornell’s 13th president in July 2015, is the University’s first female president in the institution’s 150-year history.

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Michael Smith

Michael Smith reports on politics and local news for the Ithaca Voice. He can be reached via email at, by cell at (607) 229-0885, or via Google Voice at (518) 650-3639.