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Board appoints Reilly as next University of Wisconsin System President

Statement by Regent President Toby Marcovich

July 29, 2004

Good afternoon.  I am pleased to announce that the University of Wisconsin Board of Regents just voted to appoint Kevin Reilly as the sixth president of the UW System.

We are delighted that Chancellor Reilly has agreed to take on these new challenges and to work with us in making this great university system even better and more responsive to the needs of Wisconsin citizens.

He brings a remarkable set of experiences and skills to this new position - and also a good sense of humor, which he will need.  He has done an exemplary job as chancellor of UW-Extension and he has been a leader in the university's strong push over the past few years to help Wisconsin's economy grow.  His people skills and his contacts with community leaders, media, legislators and average citizens across the state will be invaluable in his new role as president.

I want to say that we undertook a rigorous national search for this position and had many excellent candidates. We regents feel that Kevin Reilly is the right man to lead the university during these challenging times.  He is highly respected, not only by the Regents, but by students, faculty, staff, system officials and his fellow chancellors.  We know that he will continue, as president, his already strong commitment to the Wisconsin Idea.

Chancellor Reilly has big shoes to fill (high heels).  Katharine couldn't be with us today - she is at a meeting of the Board of the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching - but she has been an enthusiastic supporter of Kevin Reilly since he arrived in Madison eight years ago, and she has pledged to help him through a smooth transition over the coming few months.

I want especially to thank all those who served on the search and screen and committee, especially the chair, David Walsh, and my Regent committee co-chair Guy Gottschalk.   I know that my fellow regents look forward to working with soon-to-be President Reilly as we set sail on the new course we've just charted for the university.

I will be happy to answer any questions on the search in a few minutes, but first, I'd like to present the next president of the University of Wisconsin System - Kevin P. Reilly.

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