MADISON, Wis. – University of Wisconsin System President Kevin P. Reilly today announced six finalists for the position of chancellor at UW Colleges and UW-Extension.

A 23-member search and screen committee, chaired by Professor Christine Kniep, Family Living, Winnebago County, UW-Extension, recommended the slate of finalists to Reilly and a special committee of the UW System Board of Regents chaired by Regent Jeffrey Bartell of Madison.

Finalists (in alphabetical order):

Dr. Raymond Cross President Morrisville (N.Y.) State College  

Dr. Melvin Johnson President Tennessee State University

Dr. William Messner President Holyoke (Mass.) Community College

Dr. James Moran, III Vice Chancellor for Academic and Student Affairs Pennsylvania State System of Higher Education

Dr. Douglas Steele Vice Provost and Director of Extension Montana State University

Dr. Ann Valentine President Minnesota State Community and Technical College

Between Nov. 1 and 11, the six candidates will participate in a series of interviews, make a presentation via webcast, visit a UW Colleges campus and UW-Extension office, and meet with governance groups, offering opportunities for faculty, staff, students, and community members to interact directly with the finalists. The campus search and screen committee will post a schedule for those forums on its website.

Reilly and the special Regent committee also will interview the finalists in November. Along with Regent Bartell, committee members include Regent Tony Evers of Madison, Regent José Vásquez of Milwaukee, and Student Regent Aaron Wingad of UW-Eau Claire. They will recommend one candidate to the full Board of Regents, which must approve the appointment.

The person selected through this process will succeed Chancellor David Wilson, who stepped down in June 2010 to accept an appointment as the president of Morgan State University in Baltimore. UW-Madison Vice Provost and Dean of the Division of Continuing Studies Marv Van Kekerix is serving as interim chancellor. The University of Wisconsin Colleges and the University of Wisconsin-Extension are two statewide institutions led by a single chancellor.

The University of Wisconsin Colleges is comprised of 13 freshman-sophomore campuses and UW Colleges Online that offer an associate degree in arts and science and prepare students of all ages and backgrounds for baccalaureate and professional programs. The University of Wisconsin-Extension includes Cooperative Extension offices in 72 counties and three tribal nations, 12 Small Business Development Centers and Outreach and E-Learning programs delivered via the 26 UW System campuses and distance-learning channels, as well as the statewide networks of Wisconsin Public Radio and Wisconsin Public Television.

For more information about the six candidates, the public forums, and the search process, see For information about the UW System, see


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Media Contacts:

David Giroux
UW System

Howard Cosgrove
UW Colleges and UW-Extension
(608) 262-9871