For Immediate Release - September 18, 2007

Governor Patrick Appoints Five New Members to UMass Board of Trustees

Administration Continues to Build Education Team

BOSTON - Tuesday, September 18, 2007 - Governor Deval Patrick today appointed five new members to the University of Massachusetts Board of Trustees, continuing to strengthen a team to carry forward his vision for a comprehensive, coordinated education system in the Commonwealth. The appointments of Dr. Kerri Osterhaus, Henry M. Thomas, III, Ed Collins, Phil Johnston and James Karam, completes a series of appointments that span the education system from early education and care and K-12 through higher education.

"To be a world leader in education, we have to continually strengthen our leadership," said Governor Patrick. "The broad range of skills and depth of experience that these new trustees bring will help ensure that the University of Massachusetts flourishes."

Dr. Kerri Osterhaus, of Hudson, is an obstetrics and gynecology physician based at Women's Health of Central Massachusetts. She received her medical degree from the University of Massachusetts Medical School and completed her medical residency at UMass Memorial Medical Center in Worcester. Osterhaus will fill the seat designated to the Medical School.

Springfield resident Henry M. Thomas, III, is the President and CEO of the Urban League of Springfield. A visiting professor at the University of Massachusetts in the Department of Landscape Architecture and Regional Planning from 1998-2001, Thomas was also a member of the State Board of Education from 2001 until August 2007.

Ed Collins, of Springfield, who has been named to the labor seat on the board, attended the University of Massachusetts and is a former member of the Board of Trustees of Westfield State College. Collins is a member of the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers AFL-CIO & CLC.

Marshfield resident Phil Johnston is a health and human services consultant, a former chair of the Massachusetts Democratic Party, a former state legislator and cabinet member. He was also the New England Director of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services under President Clinton from 1993-1996. Johnston also chairs the Blue Cross Blue Shield of Massachusetts Foundation Board of Directors. He is a graduate of the University of Massachusetts at Amherst.

James Karam, President and founder of First Bristol Corporation - a development company in Fall River, is a former Chairman of the UMass Board of Trustees and an alumnus of the University of Massachusetts at Dartmouth.

"Effective leadership requires a clear vision and appointing qualified and energetic people to positions where their experience and commitment can help to promote and achieve that vision," said Dana Mohler-Faria, the Governor's Special Advisor on Education. "The appointees named today understand the value of approaching education in the Commonwealth as a continuum of services that begins before kindergarten and continues through higher education and lifelong learning."

Governor Patrick outlined his vision for the future of public education in Massachusetts in June, highlighting the link between education and the economic, social and civic prospects for individuals, communities and the Commonwealth. The Governor has called for unprecedented levels of communication and interaction among all areas of the state's public education system. He has launched the Readiness Project, an initiative involving nearly 180 citizens of the Commonwealth to develop a comprehensive 10-year strategic plan to guide the future of education in the state.

In August, the Governor named Paul Reville to chair the state Board of Education and Fred W. Clark to be the new Chair of the state's Board of Higher Education. Earlier this month, the Governor named Sharon Scott Chandler to lead the Board of Early Education and Care.

The five new appointees to the UMass Board of Trustees, each of whom will serve five year terms, will begin their service at tomorrow's Board of Trustees meeting at UMass Lowell.

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