SYRACUSE, N.Y. (AP) — The dean of the School of Law at Washington University in St. Louis has been named chancellor of Syracuse University.

The university announces Thursday that Kent D. Syverud was selected as Syracuse's 12th chancellor and president in a unanimous vote Wednesday afternoon by the college's board of trustees.

He'll succeed Nancy Cantor, who will become chancellor of Rutgers University in New Jersey on Jan. 1. Syverud will start as Syracuse chancellor on Jan. 2014.

The 56-year-old native of Irondequoit, near Rochester, was dean of Vanderbilt University Law School from 1997 to 2005 and was clerk for U.S. Supreme Court Justice Sandra Day O'Connor. He's currently a trustee of the Deepwater Horizon oil spill trust.

Syverud will lead a private university with an enrollment of more than 21,000 students.