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Posted on Fri, Jul 19, 2013 : 5:57 a.m.

University of Michigan regents appoint search committee to help find Mary Sue Coleman's replacement

By Kellie Woodhouse


University of Michigan

Melanie Maxwell I

The University of Michigan Board of Regents has appointed four faculty, a dean and two associate deans to serve on a search committee tasked with helping find President Mary Sue Coleman's replacement.

The committee is advisory in nature and will consult with the eight-member Board of Regents, made up of six elected Democrats and two Republicans, on who should replace Coleman when she retires in a year.

Regents announced the committee during a public meeting held Thursday at the North Campus Research Complex.


Mary Sue Coleman retires in 2014.

File photo |

The final decision lies with the board. In top-secret fashion, the committee will present a pool of finalists to the board and will work in conjunction with search firm Russell Reynolds Associates. U-M announced in June that it will pay the firm $300,000 —and is budgeting an additional $50,000 for expenses— to facilitate the search.

In the search that produced Coleman, the advisory committee included a student, a community member and an alumnus, as well as faculty and administrators. That committee was comprised of 16 people, not including regents.

Regent Larry Dietch, who has been involved in two previous presidential searches at U-M, said regents wanted a manageable process.

"We felt that this was going to be a more focused and streamlined approach. It was recommended to us by experts and we took it," he said in an interview.

Prior to the committee formation, U-M faculty and student government bodies each said they wanted a voice in the search.


Regent Larry Deitch file photo

The university will hold forums in September and October to get feedback on what qualities stakeholders want in their next leader.

"We're going to get lots of input from the community. We're going to hold several public meetings. We're going to have a website which the community can express their thoughts," he said, adding that regents "care a heck of a lot about students and equity and fairness" and want to make a good hire.

During the Thursday meeting, regents implored the student government body president to encourage students to attend the community forums.

Deitch said stakeholders can send nominations for Coleman's replacement to

Committee members include:

  • Alec Gallimore, professor of aerospace engineering and associate dean for research and graduate education, College of Engineering.
  • David Ginsburg, professor of internal medicine and human genetics and professor of medicine, Medical School; research professor, Life Sciences Institute; Howard Hughes Medical Institute Investigator.
  • Timothy R.B. Johnson, professor of the diseases of women and children and chair of obstetrics and gynecology, Medical School; professor of women’s studies, College of Literature, Science, and the Arts; research professor, Center for Human Growth and Development.
  • Jeffrey MacKie-Mason, dean and professor of information and computer science, School of Information; professor of economics, College of Literature, Science, and the Arts; professor of public policy, Gerald R. Ford School of Public Policy.
  • Tiya Miles, professor of history, American culture, native American studies, women’s studies and chair of Afroamerican and African studies, College of Literature, Science, and the Arts.
  • Rebecca Scott, professor of history, College of Literature, Science, and the Arts; professor of law, Law School.
  • Lynn Perry Wooten, clinical associate professor of strategy and management and organizations and associate dean for undergraduate programs, Stephen M. Ross School of Business.

Kellie Woodhouse covers higher education for Reach her at or 734-623-4602 and follow her on twitter.



Fri, Jul 19, 2013 : 11:16 p.m.

The fact that some members are faculty members is not the significant point. They were all appointed by the administration. None of the members were appointed by the Faculty Senate, none represent students or staff or the community. The selection process is the significant point. This is a top down decision and the Regents don't really care to give anything more than lip service to the "stakeholders".


Fri, Jul 19, 2013 : 8:31 p.m.

Its going to be Theresa Sullivan... Now will the U-M please write me that check. :o)


Fri, Jul 19, 2013 : 1:38 p.m.

Please correct the misinformation at the top of the article. The committee is NOT comprised of "four professors and three faculty administrators," but by seven faculty, five of whom also have administrative appointments.

Kellie Woodhouse

Fri, Jul 19, 2013 : 6:35 p.m.

If you're a dean, it's a given that you're also a tenured professor. I feel comfortable with the lede. If you want to discuss more, please shoot me an email at or call me at 734-623-4602.


Fri, Jul 19, 2013 : 5:43 p.m.

This is still misleading. Try "The committee is comprised of seven faculty, including three with senior administrative appointments."

Kellie Woodhouse

Fri, Jul 19, 2013 : 2:57 p.m.

Hi there. I clarified the first sentence a little to note the three administrators in high positions, being more specific about their titles. Of course they serve as faculty too, but I think their leadership roles are significant to note.