A message from Board of Regents Chairman Howard Hawks on the presidential search

A message from Board of Regents Chairman Howard Hawks on the presidential search

As you know, President James B. Milliken has accepted the position of chancellor of the City University of New York and soon will be leaving Nebraska. I’m very pleased to tell you that at our meeting on Friday, the Board of Regents will consider the appointment of James Linder, M.D., of Omaha, as interim president, effective May 3, 2014.

Dr. Linder is very familiar with the university, having served in faculty and administrative positions at the University of Nebraska Medical Center and in the Office of the President on a full- or part-time basis for more than 30 years. Currently, he is senior associate to the president for innovation and economic competitiveness and president of the University Technology Development Corporation. He also recently chaired the successful search for the new UNMC chancellor.

Dr. Linder holds an appointment as professor of pathology and microbiology at UNMC, where he received his medical degree and has served on the faculty since 1983. During that time, he has held a number of administrative positions, including vice chair of pathology, director of surgical pathology and cytopathology, associate dean for academic affairs, interim dean of the College of Medicine, associate vice chancellor for research and CEO of UNeMed. He also has extensive experience in the private sector.

Dr. Linder is widely published and holds multiple patents. He and his wife, Karen Linder, founded and manage Linseed Capital, which supports early-stage startup companies in the Midwest.

The Board of Regents considered several outstanding candidates for interim president, and Dr. Linder emerged as our consensus top choice to lead the university during this period of transition. He is deeply committed to our mission to serve Nebraskans through teaching, research and service, and he understands how important it is to maintain the momentum each campus is experiencing today because of your hard work. We believe he will do an excellent job.

Dr. Linder will spend the month of April working closely with President Milliken to help ensure a smooth transition. We expect him to remain interim president until the national search is successfully completed and the new president begins. He and the Board have mutually agreed that he will not be a candidate for the permanent position.

Much work remains for my colleagues on the Board and me as we continue the presidential search. President Milliken will be difficult to replace, but we are committed to finding the right person who can build on the University of Nebraska’s impressive trajectory. We hope you will continue to provide us your feedback on the search at www.nebraska.edu/presidentsearch.

Thank you for your commitment and contribution to the success of the University of Nebraska.


Howard L. Hawks
Board of Regents

University of Nebraska
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