Press Release - USM Names New Chancellor
March 25, 2002
UNIVERSITY SYSTEM OF MARYLAND NAMES NEW
Nathan A. Chapman, Jr., Chairman of the University System of Maryland (USM)
Board of Regents, today announced the appointment of William English (Brit)
Kirwan as USM Chancellor, effective August 1, 2002. Kirwan is currently
President of Ohio State University and was President of the University of
Maryland, College Park from 1989 to 1998.
A PRESS CONFERENCE TO INTRODUCE KIRWAN WILL BE HELD TUESDAY, MARCH
26, 11 A.M. AT THE USM OFFICE, 3300 METZEROTT ROAD, ADELPHI, MARYLAND.
Kirwan will succeed Donald N. Langenberg, who will retire on April 30, 2002,
after nearly 12 years as chancellor of the System. An 18-member search
committee, comprising USM regents, faculty, staff and students, and
prestigious business and community leaders conducted an extensive national
search before recommending three highly qualified individuals for the
Regents' consideration. The Board unanimously selected Kirwan for the
Chapman, in announcing Kirwan's return to Maryland as the System head, said,
"Brit is the ideal choice to take over the reins of the System. He is
recognized as a national leader and true champion of higher education.
He knows the USM and has longstanding family and community ties in Maryland.
We view him as a native son returning home."
Parris N. Glendening, Governor of Maryland, enthusiastically endorsed the
Regents' decision saying, "His [Kirwan's] tested leadership and long
standing commitment to higher education are renowned. There is no one
who could be a more effective, more respected chancellor than Brit Kirwan."
During Kirwan's tenure as the president of UMCP, the number of freshman with
SAT scores of 1400 and above increased from 49 to 342; the average SAT scores
of all freshmen increased from 1057 to 1199; the number of National Academy of
Sciences members among the faculty grew from 1 to 17; sponsored research
nearly doubled from $82 million to $155 million; annual private funds raised
went from $14 million to over $65 million; and the university's endowment
reached $158 million from $36 million in 1988. Ohio State University has
experienced similar increases during Kirwan's presidency of that university.
He led a fund raising campaign that succeeded in raising $1.23 billion, making
Ohio State only the third public university to raise in excess of $1 billion
in a single campaign. During his tenure, the average ACT scores of
entering students has increased almost 30% and, over the past two years,
sponsored research at Ohio State has increased 35%.
Continued Chapman,"Brit will bring to the chancellor's position the same
enthusiasm, intellect, and leadership skills that made him such a success as
president of the University of Maryland, College Park and Ohio State
Commenting on his return to Maryland, Kirwan said, "I firmly believe that
one can go home again. In some ways Patty and I have never left Maryland
since our children and grandchildren and so many life long friends live here.
"It's a great honor and privilege to be asked to lead a System comprised
of such diverse and wonderful institutions. When the System was formed
in 1988, I was involved in the deliberations with my counterpart presidents at
the other public universities about the structure and role of the System.
During my nine years as president of the University of Maryland at College
Park, I gained the highest regard for the presidents leading the System
institutions and for the distinct and complementary roles these 13
institutions play. I look forward to working with the presidents and the
Regents as together we build the nation's finest university system, one that
is responsive to the needs of the state and meets the highest expectations for
Catherine Gira, president of Frostburg State University, chair of the USM
Council of System Presidents, and a member of the search committee, stated,
"Although he was not a candidate, the committee sought his advice about
the position. The committee was impressed with Brit's understanding
and support of the System. His grasp of the role of the Chancellor in the
political and social structure of Maryland, his personal style and integrity,
his knowledge of the state and of the importance of higher education in this
state...all these characteristics convinced the committee that he has the
skill and talent to lead the System."
Kirwan has been very active in community affairs, having served on the Greater
Baltimore Committee and the Washington Board of Trade and as co-chair of the
Potomac Conference, among other groups, when in Maryland. In Ohio,
Kirwan has served as the chair of the Inter-University Council in Ohio and was
the founding chair of the Columbus Technology Leadership Council. He
co-chairs the Joint Council of the Ohio Department of Education and the Ohio
Board of Regents and is a member of the Higher Education Council of Columbus
as well as a member of the Ohio Chamber of Commerce and the Greater Columbus
Chamber of Commerce. He serves on the boards of the Columbus Technology
Leadership Council, Children's Hospital of Columbus, Columbus School for
Girls, Columbus Symphony Orchestra, and United Way of Franklin County.
A native of Kentucky, Kirwan holds a Ph.D and a master's degree from Rutgers
University; he has a bachelor's degree from University of Kentucky. He is a
member of several honorary and professional societies including Phi Beta
Kappa, Phi Kappa Phi, the American Mathematical Society and the Mathematical
Association of America. He is co-editor of the book Advances in Complex
Analysis. He serves on the boards of directors of the American Council
on Education (ACE) and the National Association of State Universities and Land
Grant Colleges (NASULGC). He is chair of the NCAA Division I Board of
Directors and co-chair of the Business-Higher Education Forum's Diversity
Initiative Task Force.
He grew up on the University of Kentucky campus where his father was dean of
students, graduate dean and president of the university. Kirwan is
married to Patricia Harper Kirwan; his two children, William E. Kirwan III and
Ann Kirwan Horton, are alumni of the University of Maryland, College Park; he
has two grandchildren.
The University System of Maryland enrolls over 120,000 students, employs over
10,000 faculty members, and has an operating budget of $2.5 billion. There are
thirteen institutions within the System, 11 degree-granting and two research
institutes. It is governed by a 17-member Board of Regents. Kirwan
will be the third Chancellor of the System, succeeding Langenberg and John
Toll, currently president of Washington College in Chestertown, Maryland.
Ohio State University