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Regents Announce Finalists for University System of Georgia Chancellor

Atlanta — November 21, 2005

Erroll B. Davis, Jr. thumbnail
Erroll B. Davis, Jr.
Dr. Daniel S. Papp thumbnail
Dr. Daniel S. Papp
David R. Smith, M.D. thumbnail
David R. Smith, M.D.

Board of Regents Chairman J. Timothy Shelnut today announced the names of the three finalists for chancellor of the University System of Georgia.

One of the three named finalists will be selected to serve as the 11th chancellor of the University System of Georgia, in a special called meeting of the Board of Regents slated for early December.

The finalist named Chancellor-Elect of the University System will replace current Interim Chancellor Corlis C. Cummings. Cummings has held the post since October 1 when she was appointed to the role upon the departure of the immediate past chancellor, Thomas C. Meredith. She will continue to serve in an interim capacity until the start date is determined for the new permanent chancellor.

“The national search that we conducted has yielded just the type of candidates we expected,” Shelnut said. “We had an extremely qualified pool of diverse leaders who expressed interest in leading the University System, which speaks volumes to the USG’s reputation and national preeminence. “

Regent Elridge McMillan, who chaired the Board of Regents’ Chancellor Search Advisory Committee, said: “I am very pleased with how the process has unfolded exactly according to our timeline. Now, we are looking forward to the site visits with each of the finalists, and the culmination of the search with the selection of the next chancellor.”

The finalists for the chancellor’s post, in alphabetical order, are as follows:

Mr. Erroll B. Davis, Jr., chairman of Madison, Wis., based Alliant Energy Corporation. Davis has served as chairman of the board of Alliant Energy Corporation since 2000, after joining the company in 1998 as president and chief executive officer. He retired from his dual roles as president and CEO in July 2005, while retaining the chairman’s post. Prior to joining Alliant Energy, Davis served as president and CEO of WPL Holdings, from 1990 to 1998. From 1978-1990, Davis rose through the senior management ranks at Wisconsin Power and Light Company, starting as vice president of finance and ending as CEO and president. His career also includes corporate finance positions at Xerox Corporation and Ford Motor Company. Davis’ higher education experience includes roles as former chairman of the board of trustees of Carnegie Mellon University, member of the Board of Trustees of the University of Chicago, and member of the University of Wisconsin System Board of Regents from 1987-1994. Davis earned a bachelor of science in electrical engineering from Carnegie Mellon University and a M.B.A. from the University of Chicago. Davis is a member of the board of directors of BP p.l.c., PPG Industries, Inc., and Union Pacific Corp., and numerous professional associations and civic organizations. In 2004, he was elected to the U.S. Olympic Committee Board, and chairs the USOC’s Audit Committee.

Dr. Daniel S. Papp, senior vice chancellor for academics and fiscal affairs, University System of Georgia. Prior to his current role, Papp served from 1999-2000 as director of educational program for the Electronic Design (Yamacraw) Program, the academic/industry initiative aimed at developing Georgia’s leadership in broadband technology. He accepted that assignment from his position as a professor in the Sam Nunn School of International Affairs at the Georgia Institute of Technology. From 1997-98, Papp served as interim president of Southern Polytechnic State University. Previously, he served as executive assistant to the president of Georgia Tech, from 1994-97, while also serving as professor of international affairs. During his career at Georgia Tech, Papp also was professor and founding director of the School of International Affairs, from 1990-93; and director of the School of Social Sciences, from 1980-90. Papp has held visiting and research professor roles at Fudan University in Shanghai, China; the Center for Aerospace Doctrine, Research and Education, at the U.S. Air University, in Montgomery, Alabama; the Strategic Studies Institute at the U.S. Army War College, in Carlisle, Pa., and the Western Australia Institute of Technology, in Perth, Australia. Papp has authored or edited twelve books, and published over 60 articles on various topics related to international affairs and defense policy. A Phi Beta Kappa graduate of Dartmouth College, he holds a Ph.D. from the University of Miami.

David R. Smith, M.D., chancellor of the Texas Tech University System, in Lubbock, Texas. Smith has served in his current role since May 2002, after serving as interim chancellor for 10 months and as president of the Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center for six years. Prior to joining Texas Tech, Smith served for five years as the commissioner of the Texas Department of Health, from 1992 to 1996. From 1989 to 1992, Smith served as the senior vice president of Parkland Memorial Hospital in Dallas, Tex., and as the chief executive officer and medical director of Parkland’s Community Oriented Primary Care Program. Smith also served in federal government from 1987-1989, as the deputy director of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ Division of Special Populations and Program Development in Washington, D.C. During this period, he also was commissioned as an officer in the United States Public Health Service. Smith received his bachelor’s degree from Cornell University, and a medical degree from the University of Cincinnati College of Medicine. Smith is a member of the national board of trustees for the March of Dimes, and a long-time member of the national board for the Campaign for Tobacco Free Kids. In January, he began serving on the board of directors of the National Association of State Universities and Land-Grant Colleges.

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