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Michael Gottfredson named new President of University of Oregon

Note to Editors: To access photos, audio and video clips related to Dr. Gottfredson’s appointment please go to: http://uoregon.edu/gottfredson

Contact: Di Saunders, OUS director of communications – Cell: 971-219-6869

Portland, OR, June 15, 2012 – The president of the State Board of Higher Education, Matthew Donegan, announced today that Dr. Michael R. Gottfredson, currently the executive vice-chancellor and provost at the University of California, Irvine, has been named the new president of the University of Oregon. The Board voted unanimously to appoint Dr. Gottfredson as president at this morning’s telephonic Board meeting, which several members attended at the UO with Gottfredson present. Gottfredson will begin at the UO on August 1 as the university’s 17th president, taking over from interim president Robert Berdahl, who was appointed in December of 2011.

Board of Higher Education president Matthew Donegan said, “The appointment of Dr. Gottfredson is great news for the University of Oregon, at a time when the UO is counted on more than ever as an economic and cultural engine for our state. Michael is an education leader of national renown, befitting the UO’s position on the national stage, and its importance here at home. He will contribute immediately to the transformation of Oregon’s education system that is already underway.” 

Governor John Kitzhaber said, “Oregon welcomes Dr. Gottfredson and his family to the state and to the University of Oregon community. This is an exciting time for education in Oregon, and the addition of Dr. Gottfredson to public higher education continues the positive momentum. He’s the right person for the job, and the type of leader who can balance UO’s needs and plans with those of the entire state.”

Dr. Gottfredson has served as executive vice-chancellor and provost, and professor of Criminology, Law and Society at the University of California, Irvine since 2000. Among the many accomplishments during his tenure, Gottfredson led efforts to significantly grow enrollment, add new faculty, degree programs, facilities, schools, and departments. He led a major expansion of the campus infrastructure, blending state, campus and private support. He helped to create the California Institute for Telecommunications and Technology, including the construction of a $55 million research facility, and the new public law school. Gottfredson is also known for substantially increasing representation of women and under-represented minority faculty and administrators; and for his extensive work to enhance the undergraduate experience within a large research university.

“I’m very excited about being appointed president of the University of Oregon and appreciate the efforts of all of those involved in the search process,” said Michael Gottfredson. “Karol and I are looking forward to joining the UO community later this summer and helping to move forward the mission and goals of this prestigious institution. This is a unique time for higher education in Oregon with lots of possibilities for helping more students succeed across the state and get us closer to the 40-40-20 goal. UO has and will continue to play a leadership role in ensuring that Oregonians have access to one of the best universities in the country, and that our graduates will continue to make important contributions to the economy of Oregon.”

The search committee for the president of the University of Oregon, which began its work in late January, was chaired by Board of Higher Education member Allyn Ford. “I am very thankful for all the quality work that this search committee put in under a very aggressive time frame,” said Ford. “We all shared a common goal to find the best person to lead the University of Oregon in a time when new ideas and approaches are needed to ensure a strong UO and a strong public university system.”

"I have admired Mike Gottfredson for many years, from when I first met him when we were both in the University of California and when we worked together in AAU,” said Robert Berdahl, interim president of the UO. “He is outstanding - highly respected, smart, thoughtful. He will be a great president for the UO."

Oregon University System chancellor, George Pernsteiner said, “I have already seen the University of Oregon community embrace Dr. Gottfredson, and I join them in being thrilled about his presidency. The Oregon University System has a very strong Council of Presidents who have worked in collaboration on everything from academic programs to signature research centers to collectively advocating for higher education with the public and state policy leaders.” Pernsteiner added, “We are also grateful for the strong leadership of interim president Robert Berdahl over the last several months, and thank him for ensuring continuity in the University’s Office of the President.”

Prior to joining the UCI, Dr. Gottfredson served in several positions at the University of Arizona from 1985 to 2000, including interim senior vice president for academic affairs and provost, vice provost and vice president of Undergraduate Education. Other academic positions Dr. Gottfredson has held include associate professor at The Claremont Graduate School from 1983-1985; associate professor of Sociology, University of Illinois, Urbana from 1981 to 1983; assistant professor at the Graduate School of Criminal Justice, State University of New York at Albany from 1977 to 1979; and director of the Criminal Justice Research Center in Albany, New York from 1976 to 1979.

Dr. Gottfredson holds a Ph.D. and an M.A. from the State University of New York at Albany; and an A.B. from the University of California, Davis. He is married to Karol Gottfredson, who is currently the coordinator of the Intern Teacher Credential Program at the University of California, Irvine. The Gottfredson’s have a daughter, Katherine, a son Bryan and daughter-in-law Meghan, and two young granddaughters.

Dr. Gottfredson will return to the UO campus  in July as he prepares the transition to the role of president, and his official start date of August 1.

The Oregon University System comprises seven distinguished public universities and one branch campus, reaching more than one million people each year through on-campus and on-line classes, statewide public services and lifelong learning. The Oregon State Board of Higher Education, the statutory governing board of OUS, is composed of twelve members appointed by the Governor and confirmed by the Oregon State Senate. For additional information, go to www.ous.edu