MADISON, Wis. – Dr. Renée Wachter, Dean of the School of Business at Truman State University, has been recommended as the next Chancellor of the University of Wisconsin-Superior.
UW System President Kevin P. Reilly and a special committee of the UW System Board of Regents announced their recommendation today. Following action by the full board on April 8, Wachter would step into her new leadership role on or about July 1.
Wachter joined Truman State University, in Kirksville, Missouri, in 2006, after serving as Associate Dean for Academic Affairs in the College of Business at Montana State University; and Associate Dean at the School of Business at University of Indianapolis. Previously, she was an Assistant Professor of Management at Ball State University’s Miller College of Business, and Director of the Groupware Computer Laboratory at Indiana University.
“Dr. Wachter is a very impressive educational leader – someone who is genuinely enthusiastic about UW-Superior, all of its strengths, and all of its potential,” Reilly said. “She has a distinguished record of successful service and senior-level leadership, and I am confident she is well prepared to lead UW-Superior to a bright future.
“She also brings a strong understanding of the role our UW institutions play as engines of growth for Wisconsin, and how we must work together to maximize that potential,” Reilly said.
Wachter holds a Ph.D. in Business from Indiana University, and a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration from the University of Kansas.
“During my visit to campus, it was clear that UW-Superior is a university on the move. I observed an abiding commitment from the staff, faculty, and administration for inclusive excellence in its outreach to students. I saw a curriculum framed by a core of liberal learning,” Wachter said.
“I also sensed a deep belief by all in the transformation of students to meet the challenges of a world that requires flexibility, technological savvy, and imagination. How could I not be impressed? I am honored and joyful to be able to join the UW-Superior team to continue with creativity and innovation the realization of the promise for an accessible, top-quality education; for sustained devotion toward the communities of northern Wisconsin; and for the development of research that is relevant to addressing economic issues,” Wachter said.
“We are very pleased with the selection, and we are excited to begin our work with Dr. Wachter. She clearly understands – and will lead us in furthering – UW-Superior’s public liberal arts mission,” said Professor Martha Einerson, of the UW-Superior Department of Communicating Arts. Einerson chaired the search and screen committee.
Wachter was one of four finalists identified by Einerson’s committee following a national search. Other finalists included Dr. Anantha S. Babbili from Texas A&M University-Corpus Christi, Dr. Steven Siconolfi of Ithaca College, and Dr. Cheryl Norton from Southern Connecticut State University, who withdrew prior to interviews.
“Renée Wachter understands the role UW-Superior plays as a publicly funded university with a strong dedication to the liberal arts. I believe she has the capacity to excel in maintaining strong relations between students and faculty and between the university and the Twin Ports area,” said Regent Mark Bradley of Wausau, chair of the Board of Regents committee that interviewed all of the finalists.
Others serving on the special committee included Regent Stan Davis of Sun Prairie, Regent Edmund Manydeeds of Eau Claire, and Regent Brent Smith of La Crosse.
If confirmed by the full Board next week, Wachter will succeed UW-Superior Chancellor Julius Erlenbach, who retired last August. Erlenbach is returning to campus this spring to serve several months as Interim Chancellor after the previous Interim Chancellor, Christopher Markwood, departed for a new job in Texas.
UW-Superior is Wisconsin’s public liberal arts university, preparing students for lifelong learning and rewarding careers. The campus enrolled 2,850 students this year in more than 26 undergraduate and graduate programs. The university is a member of the Council of Public Liberal Arts Colleges and plays a key role in the UW System’s Growth Agenda for Wisconsin in the northern part of the state.