Regents Roundup


The following items were approved by the Board of Regents at its Dec. 15 meeting.

MINTS initiative, guidelines approved

Regents approved the Michigan Investment in New Technology Startups (MINTS) initiative and its guidelines. Through the new initiative, the university could inject up to $25 million during the next decade into select venture-funded U-M startups — new companies built around inventions born in faculty members’ labs. Investments of up to $500,000 will be made in single-round financing, and up to $1 million in second rounds if $500,000 is insufficient to secure participation in that round.

Schematic design for Law Quad residential renovations

The regents approved the schematic design for renovation of the Charles T. Munger Residences in the Lawyers Club Building and John P. Cook Building. The renovation of the Law School’s living spaces, approximately 92,000 gross square feet, will address infrastructure needs including new plumbing, heating, ventilation, fire detection and suppression systems, wired and wireless high-speed network access, and accessibility improvements. The estimated cost of the project is $39 million. Funding will be provided from a gift, investment proceeds, and resources from the Lawyers Club of the University of Michigan.

Capital outlay request submitted to the State of Michigan

In November the Ann Arbor, Dearborn and Flint campuses each submitted annual requests for capital funding and a five-year capital plan to the State of Michigan. The Ann Arbor request is for the renovation of the George Granger Brown Memorial Laboratories building, with a project cost of $47 million. The Dearborn request is to renovate the Science Building and the Computer Science Building with their shared infrastructure for $51 million. The Flint request is to renovate the classrooms and laboratories in the Murchie Science Building for $22.17 million.

Final approval for addition to G. G. Brown

The regents authorized issuing bids and awarding construction contracts for an approximately 62,500 gross square foot addition to the George Granger Brown Memorial Laboratories building to support the Department of Mechanical Engineering’s research endeavors in bio-systems, energy and nano-systems. The project, estimated to cost $46 million, is being funded by College of Engineering resources, gifts, university investment proceeds, and a federal construction grant from the National Institute of Standards and Technology. Construction on the addition is scheduled to be completed in the summer of 2014.

Ann Arbor Campus

Faculty appointments with tenure

Marlyse Baptista, transfer of tenure to professor of linguistics, LSA, effective Jan. 1.

James Slavin, professor of atmospheric, oceanic and space sciences, College of Engineering, effective Sept. 1.

Maureen Walton, associate professor of psychiatry, Medical School, effective Dec.1.

Named professorships

James R. Barber, Jon R. and Beverly S. Holt Professor of Engineering, CoE, effective Jan. 1, 2012-Dec. 31, 2016.

Dr. Asheesh Bedi, Harold W. and Helen L. Gehring Early Career Professor of Orthopaedic Surgery, Medical School, effective Dec. 1, 2011-Aug. 31, 2016.

Mark A. Burns, T. C. Chang Professor of Engineering, CoE, effective Jan. 1, 2012-Dec. 31, 2016.

*Wei Cheng, Ara G. Paul Assistant Professor of Pharmaceutical Sciences, College of Pharmacy, effective Jan. 1, 2012-Dec. 31, 2014.

Roy Clarke, Marcellus L. Wiedenbeck Collegiate Professor of Physics, LSA, effective Dec. 1, 2011-Aug. 31, 2016.

Jason Gestwicki, William B. Pratt Collegiate Professor in the Life Sciences, Medical School, effective Dec. 1, 2011-Aug. 31, 2016.

Nicholas Kotov, Joseph B. and Florence V. Cejka Professor of Engineering, CoE, effective Jan. 1, 2012-Dec. 31, 2016.

Reuven Lehavy, Victor L. Bernard-Price WaterhouseCoopers LLP Collegiate Professor of Accounting, Stephen M. Ross School of Business, effective Dec. 1, 2011-Nov. 30, 2016.

Xiaoqing Pan, Richard F. and Eleanor A. Towner Professor of Engineering, CoE, effective Jan. 1, 2012-Dec. 31, 2016.

Dr. Kenneth Pituch, David G. Dickinson Collegiate Professor of Pediatrics and Communicable Diseases, Medical School, effective Dec. 1, 2011-Aug. 31, 2016.

Administrative appointments

Dr. Caroline Blaum, assistant dean for clinical affairs, Medical School, effective Dec. 1.

Johanna Prins, chair, Department of Comparative Literature, LSA, effective Jan. 1, 2012-Dec. 31, 2012.

James Slavin, chair, Department of Atmospheric, Oceanic and Space Sciences, effective Sept. 1, 2011-Aug. 31, 2016.

*Christina Whitman, vice provost for academic and faculty affairs, Office of the Provost and Executive Vice President for Academic Affairs, effective July 1, 2012-June 30, 2014.

Flint Campus

Susan Gano-Phillips, chair, Department of Psychology, College of Arts and Sciences, effective Jan. 1, 2012-June 30, 2015.

Jessica Tischler, chair, Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry, College of Arts and Sciences, effective Jan. 1, 2012-June 30, 2015.



Ronald Fleming, professor of nuclear engineering and radiological science, CoE, effective Dec. 31. He joined the faculty in 1989. While still a graduate student at Michigan, Fleming proposed that a state-of-the-art neutron depth profiling facility be built at the National Bureau of Standards, now the National Institute of Standards and Technology, (NIST). It came online in 1982. For this work, Fleming and a colleague were awarded the bureau’s Applied Research Award in 1986. He served as director of the Michigan Memorial Phoenix Project from 1989-2000, then spent a sabbatical term at the 2 MW research reactor, Technical University of Delft, the Netherlands. This contributed to an ongoing NIST-Delft-Ann Arbor collaboration.

John Fornaess, professor of mathematics, LSA, effective Dec. 31. Fornaess joined the faculty in 1990. His early work helped clarify the central notion of pseudoconvexity, and he has been a force in extending the study of complex-analytic dynamical systems to the multivariate setting. He was the analysis area leader for the department for six years, served as associate chair for graduate studies, and was coordinator for the large Calculus 215 and 216 courses. He has supervised 22 successful Ph.D. students, authored or co-authored more than 150 research papers, written four books, and served 15 years on the editorial board of the Michigan Mathematical Journal. He is the recipient of a Sloan Fellowship and the Bergman Prize, among other awards.

Theresa M. Lee, professor of psychology, LSA, and research professor in the Reproductive Sciences Program, effective Dec. 31. Lee joined the faculty in 1988. Her research focuses on the areas of chronobiology and behavioral endocrinology and reflects a broad understanding of behavioral neuroscience. Lee developed unique animal models that were used to study seasonal changes in maternal-offspring interactions, hibernation, circadian physiology, and behavior. Recognized as one of the most eminent researchers in biopsychology, she was named a Fellow of the Association for Psychological Science. Lee served as chair of the Department of Psychology from 2007-11. She received LSA’s Undergraduate Mentoring and Advising Award and Rackham’s Distinguished Graduate Mentor Award.

Daniel H. Levine, professor of political science, LSA, effective Dec. 31. Levine joined the faculty in 1969. He is a scholar with a deep knowledge and understanding of Latin America and its cultures, as well as a keen analyst and conceptualizer. This has made his work helpful not only to those who study the region, but to anyone interested in the relationship between religion and politics. His served as Department of Political Science chairman (1999-2004), and as a teacher inspired generations of graduate and undergraduate students with his commitment to intellectual honesty, empirical research embedded in important issues, and devotion to their intellectual and personal growth.

Mary Simoni, professor of music (performing arts technology), in the School of Music, Theatre & Dance, effective May 31. Simoni joined the faculty in 1994. She is a pianist and author whose music and multimedia works have been recorded widely. Her research has been funded by the Knight Foundation, the Kellogg Foundation, the National Science Foundation, and the Michigan Council for the Arts and Cultural Affairs. From 2009 until her retirement, Simoni was associate dean for research and community engagement in SMTD. Prior to that, she had served as associate dean for research and planning, associate dean of Internet publications, and chair of the Department of Performing Arts Technology. Simoni also directed Block M Records.

Macklin Smith, associate professor of English language and literature, LSA, effective Dec. 31. Smith joined the faculty in 1975. He was a medievalist and a poet, with a longstanding interest in historical and contemporary verse forms. His first book was a study of the Latin poet Prudentius. Smith also published articles on Geoffrey Chaucer and William Langland. Also interested in contemporary verse, he currently is working on an online collection of hip-hop poetry. Smith was co-author of “Teaching Writing That Works: A Group Approach to Practical English,” and the poetry volume “Transplant.” Smith’s service to the English department has included positions as associate chair and director of undergraduate studies.

Berit Stensones, professor of mathematics, LSA, effective Dec. 31. Stensones joined the faculty in 1990. She studies analytic and geometric questions in the area of several complex variables. Her results have had a significant influence on the subject. She has published more than 20 research papers with several collaborators. Within the Department of Mathematics, Stensones has supervised five successful doctorate students, served on the committees of or hosted several others, and mentored many postdoc students. She has taught many of the department’s honors and advanced calculus courses, and numerous graduate courses. She served as associate chair for graduate studies and has received the LSA Excellence in Research Award.

Lawrence Waggoner, Lewis M. Simes Professor of Law and professor of law, Law School, effective Dec. 31. He joined the faculty in 1974. Waggoner is a pre-eminent scholar in the field of trusts and estates. He is nationally respected for his grasp of this technical and complex area of the law, for his sensitivity to the practical problems that drive its doctrine, and for his ability to conceptualize and articulate important reforms. In addition to having written many lectures, case books and articles, Waggoner has played an active role in law reform and performed other service, including that as director of research for the Joint Editorial Board for the Uniform Trust and Estate Acts for 16 years.

Kendall Walton, Charles L. Stevenson Collegiate Professor of Philosophy and professor of philosophy, LSA, and professor of art and design, School of Art & Design, effective Dec. 31. He joined the university in 1965. Walton is the most eminent living philosopher of art in the Anglo-American tradition. He has written on the nature of fiction, emotional responses to fiction, fictional entities, pictorial representation, photography, aesthetic value, aesthetic and moral value, metaphor, imagination, empathy, sports, and music, including musical expressiveness, representation, and experience. Walton’s teaching and leadership have made Michigan a center for study in aesthetics. He has been president of the American Society for Aesthetics, and is a Fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences.

Ralph Williams, Arthur F. Thurnau Professor and professor of English language and literature, LSA, effective Dec. 31. He joined the faculty in 1970. Williams taught widely in the Department of English, and is known for his undergraduate courses in Great Books, Shakespeare, the Bible and comparative religion. Awards include the Lifetime Achievement Golden Apple Award, the Excellence in Education Teaching Award (four times), and Michigan Daily’s Best Professor (10 times). He served in administrative positions in both the English department and LSA. Williams was an active supporter of the Alumni Association, and of collaborations with The Royal Shakespeare Company. His career was celebrated in his 2010 retirement symposium, Sacred and Canonical Texts in Public Culture.


Leave a comment

Commenting is closed for this article. Please read our comment guidelines for more information.