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The Mass Media

Umass Boston Chancellor Search Committee

SIDEBAR: UMass Boston Chancellor Search Committee

For those who are coming late to class, here’s an updated rundown of search committee members, and a timeline to help those keeping track of UMass Boston’s hunt for its next chancellor.

Kristine Alster – Assistant professor and former interim dean of the College of NursingMark Atkins – Invention Machine Corporation president and UMass Boston alumnusDennis Austin – UMass trustee and UMass Boston alumnus, director of state government relations at RaytheonLawrence Boyle – UMass trustee, attorney, and UMass Boston alumnusRobert Chen -Environmental, Coastal, and Ocean Sciences professorPat Flaherty – UMass Boston Alumni Association presidentHeriberto Flores – Executive director of the New England Farm Workers Council, of Springfield. Current trustee of Holyoke Community College and former UMass trustee whose term expired in 2001Terrence Gomes – Roxbury Community College presidentRobert Johnson – Africana Studies Department chairThomas Keady – Boston College vice president and UMass Boston alumnusMichael Keating – “High-powered litigation lawyer,” says the Boston Globe, at Foley, Hoag LLP, who UMass hired in 2003 to review then-President William M. Bulger’s employment contract. A Williams College ’62 trustee and 2002 president of the Boston Bar Association, he also reportedly performed background checks on candidates during the search for Bulger’s replacement.William Kennedy – UMass trustee, attorney, and former advisor to House Speaker Thomas FinneranWinston Langley – Associate Provost of Academic Affairs and Political Science professor, who serves on many campus committeesRegina McCarthy – Alumna and former deputy secretary for operations at the Massachusetts Governor’s Office for Commonwealth Development, and recently appointed to Connecticut’s Department of Environmental Protection and an alumnaDenise Patmon – Curriculum and Instruction Department chair and professorTuan Pham – UMass Boston student trustee, College of ManagementStacey Rainey – Chairperson of committee and UMass trustee, former deputy chief of staff to Gov. Jane Swift.Robert Sheridan – UMass trustee and president of Savings Bank Life InsuranceNatalie Crawford-Smith – Representing SEIU Local 888, UMass Boston staffMary Stevenson – Economics professorManickam Sugumaran – Biology Department chair and professor

source: UMass President’s Office



August 1 – Chancellor Jo Ann Gora leaves for Indiana’s Ball State University, after three turbulent years at the helm of UMass Boston. Vice Chancellor of Student Affairs J. Keith Motley, finishing up his first year at the job since transferring from Northeastern University, is picked by UMass President Jack M. Wilson to steer the harbor campus on the interim.

September – As the UMass President’s Office begins to assemble a search committee, Motley sits down with the Mass Media to talk about the search. “My goal is to be a chancellor or a president,” he said. “I know I that will be one somewhere. I hope it’s here, at UMass Boston. But if it isn’t here, then maybe I’ll have do it somewhere else. But my goal has always been that.” A consensus forms on campus that the job is his to lose.

October 12 – President Wilson announces the formation of a 19-member search committee, headed up by Stacey Rainey, UMass trustee and former deputy chief of staff to Gov. Jane Swift. With the appointment of the committee, the national hunt for a permanent chancellor gets fully underway.

November 1 – The chancellor search committee holds its first meeting. Rainey said it will end in the selection of “an outstanding, dynamic leader for UMass Boston.” Joining the committee is Shelly Storbeck from the Virginia-based search-consulting firm A. T. Kearney. Storbeck has helped with over 300 public and private searches, including at the University of Michigan and Lewis and Clark College, where Chancellor Gora was a candidate earlier that year.

November 15 – Search committee members held an open forum on campus, speaking with faculty, staff, and students. Members also spent two days meeting with leaders in business and the local community, as well as several state legislators. At the open forum for students, five to six brought “Let’s Keep Keith” signs with them, while student government officials and others expressed their support for Motley.

November 23 – The search committee holds its second meeting. While refining a draft of a case statement describing the university, that will be sent out to prospective candidates, members debated including Motley’s ‘R’, (‘renewal,’ which Motley added to Gora’s 3 Rs – retention, research, and reputation) ultimately deciding instead to move it to another section of the statement. At a December Faculty Council meeting, Motley said “renewal” was getting the city to understand UMass Boston is a university on the move, and renewing its spirit, attitude, and research, amid some complaints that a fourth ‘r’ was confusing. “I am going to be talking about renewal as long as I am chancellor,” he said. “My agenda is to be chancellor right now.”

December 18 – The search committee holds its third meeting.


January 25 – Fourth meeting is held, as members go over resumes of prospective candidates and attempt to winnow the field.

February, March, and April – Candidate interviews will take place, with finalists expected to visit the campus.

May – President Wilson submits a name to the UMass Board of Trustees, after a recommendation by the search committee.