President Katharine C. Lyall leads the 8th largest university system in the U.S. As its fifth president and first woman president, she manages a system with 26 campuses, statewide Extension, a $3.35 billion budget, 30,000 employees and nearly 160,000 students.

A partial list of her accomplishments and milestones during her presidency:

  • External Resources: More than $6.3 billion of gifts, grants and contracts have been raised across the UW System since 1992.
    • In 1992-93 UW faculty and staff received $366 million in federal grants and contracts. By 2000-2001 that figure had grown to $540 million.
    • In 1992-93 the UW System raised approximately $130 million in private contributions. This past year $291 million was raised Systemwide.
  • Innovation: President Lyall and Board of Regents President Jay L. Smith created the first statewide economic summit in 2000 and followed it with Wisconsin Economic Summit II in November of 2001.
  • Accountability: President Lyall issued the first UW System Accountability Report in 1993, one of the first university systems in the nation to do so.
  • Efficiency: Under President Lyall, administrative costs have been reduced from 6.4% of expenditures in 1992 to 5.8% in 2001. The average at the 19 state university systems nationally went up from 9.5% in 1992 to 10.4% in 2001. And credits to degree have declined from 145 to 137 since 1993, reducing the strain on the UW System by holding down unnecessary credits.
  • Access: Since 1995 both the number of UW System distance education courses and enrollments in distance education courses have more than doubled.
  • Graduation: UW System graduation rates are already above the national average, and President Lyall has implemented a plan to increase these rates by 10% over four years.
  • Public Service: President Lyall chairs the board of The Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching, the nation’s oldest organization supporting teachers and excellence in teaching. She also serves on the boards of several corporate and philanthropic organizations

    Testimony on Assembly Bill 709
    Jay L. Smith, President University of Wisconsin Board of Regents
    February 5, 2002

Media Contact

Erik Christianson UW System 608-262-5061