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UC Regents Appoint Mark Yudof

UC Regents Appoint a New President for the 10-campus System

Mark Yudof is the new president of the University of California

(March 27, 2008)

Mark YudofEnlarge

Mark Yudof

The University of California Board of Regents today (March 27) voted unanimously to appoint Mark G. Yudof, current head of the University of Texas system and a recognized leader in American higher education, the 19th president of the University of California.

The appointment was made during a special meeting of the board following a search committee’s recommendation last week. Yudof will succeed Robert C. Dynes, who last August announced his intention to step down by June 2008 after nearly five years in the position.

Yudof’s appointment will become effective this summer, with the exact date to be determined.

“I am deeply honored by this appointment,” said Yudof. “The University of California stands as a model for the world, creating tomorrow’s leaders and innovators and helping to solve many of society’s most pressing problems. I can think of no greater personal privilege than to have the opportunity to lead this remarkable institution.”

Yudof, 63, has served as chancellor of the UT system since 2002. He heads one of the largest university systems in the country with 15 campuses, 194,000 students and an annual operating budget of $10.7 billion. Yudof previously was president of the University of Minnesota and a longtime faculty member, dean and provost at the University of Texas at Austin.

“The Regents have made a terrific choice in selecting Mark Yudof to be the next president of the University of California,” said Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger. “This is a world-class selection for a world-class university system. As one of the nation’s most important and respected university leaders, Mr. Yudof has a proven record of great achievements. I am confident that his broad range of executive and academic expertise will serve the university and the people of California well.” The governor called Yudof today to personally convey his support.

Richard C. Blum, chairman of the UC Board of Regents, said California was fortunate to have secured one of the nation’s most sought-after university leaders.

“I am delighted that Mark Yudof has agreed to lead the UC system and serve as its next president,” Blum said. “I cannot think of a more qualified person to meet the day-to-day challenges and provide the long-term vision that is needed at this time in the university’s history. The choice of a new leader is an integral part of our effort to restructure the administration of the university and make it more efficient. The most important part of that restructuring is securing a leader to move the effort forward. Mark Yudof brings a strong commitment to academic values and also a strong record of performance as a manager, and I am certain that under his direction the UC system will continue to thrive as the world’s preeminent public university system. I also wish to thank Provost Rory Hume for the outstanding work he already has done as chief operating officer in providing a strong launch for our restructuring.”

Yudof currently heads a public university system with nine academic campuses and six health institutions. Before being named chancellor of the UT system, he was a faculty member and administrator at UT Austin for 26 years and then served five years as president of the University of Minnesota. A highly regarded legal scholar and the recipient of many professional awards, Yudof is an expert on constitutional law, freedom of expression and education law.

“I am impressed by the outstanding leadership that Mark Yudof has brought to two large university systems — the University of Texas and the University of Minnesota,” said state Sen. Jack Scott, D-Altadena. “I am confident that he will make a similar contribution to our UC system. As chair of the Senate Education Committee and the Senate Budget Subcommittee on Education Finance, I look forward to working with him.”

“Mark Yudof is an excellent choice as the next UC president,” said outgoing president Dynes. “I say that as a departing president who is thankful to entrust the university to an outstanding successor, and also as a member of the UC faculty who is overjoyed that we will have a leader of such high caliber. He is a passionate and able champion of public higher education, and I believe he has the vision and skill necessary to not only sustain but strengthen the University of California’s tradition of excellence and public service.”

Yudof said that in addition to academic excellence and student opportunity, among his priorities at the University of California will be continuation of the effort to review and refine the roles and responsibilities of systemwide administration.

“A system office exists to facilitate the work of the campuses and add value to the campuses — to ensure that the whole is greater than the sum of the parts,” Yudof said. “It should facilitate collaboration and cost savings among the campuses, not erect obstacles in their quest for excellence. The University of California already is looking intensively at these issues at the Office of the President, and I intend to continue that restructuring effort as president.”

Yudof also emphasized the importance of accountability mechanisms at the systemwide and campus levels to demonstrate the return on the public’s investment in the university. Likewise, he said he will place a priority on communicating with Californians and building greater understanding of how the university contributes to their daily lives.

“The University of California is important to every family in California,” Yudof said. “We must earn the confidence of the people of California every day, and part of that effort involves demonstrating how our work is solving problems that are important in their lives — in health, in the environment, in agriculture and nutrition, and in countless other areas.”

UC faculty leader Michael Brown expressed his support for the appointment of Yudof. “Chancellor Yudof brings strong leadership, a commitment to academic excellence and diversity, and a deep appreciation of shared governance,” said Brown, chair of the UC Academic Senate and professor of Counseling/Clinical/School Psychology in the Graduate School of Education at UC Santa Barbara. “I believe the faculty will be pleased with his appointment.”

In addition to serving as president, Yudof will hold a faculty appointment in the School of Law at UC Berkeley.

UC Riverside's acting chancellor, Robert D. Grey, welcomed the choice. "He is highly regarded by all who know him and his long record of distinguished leadership makes him an ideal leader for the University of California. I'm delighted by the prospect of his appointment."

Yudof, a native of Philadelphia, earned a bachelor’s degree and an LL.B. degree from the University of Pennsylvania. He began his academic career at UT Austin in 1971 as an assistant professor of law and later became dean of the School of Law from 1984 to 1994 and executive vice president and provost from 1994 to 1997, when he left for the University of Minnesota.

He is a fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, a member of the American Law Institute, and a member of The President’s Council on Service and Civic Participation, an appointment President George W. Bush made in 2006.

His wife, Judy, is the immediate past international president of the United Synagogue of Conservative Judaism. She also serves on the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum Council in Washington, D.C., and on the international board of Hillel. The Yudofs have two grown children — a son, Seth, and a daughter, Samara.

The presidential search committee that recommended Yudof’s appointment consisted of Richard C. Blum, chairman of the Board of Regents and chair of the search committee; Regent Sherry L. Lansing, vice chair of the committee; Regents Russell S. Gould, Eddie Island, Norman J. Pattiz, Leslie Tang Schilling and Paul Wachter; Regent Benjamin Allen, the 2007-08 student Regent; and Regent Eleanor Brewer, representing the Alumni Associations of the University of California. Staff adviser Lynda Brewer and faculty representative Michael Brown also advised the committee. The search process involved consulting with constituent groups from across all 10 campuses, including representative advisory committees of faculty, students, staff and alumni. Additional information is at

As UC president, Yudof will receive a compensation package valued at $828,000 in the 2008-09 year, compared to a current package estimated at $790,000 at the University of Texas. (These figures do not include standard retirement plan funding for future retirement benefits for university employees at both institutions.)

The UC compensation consists of the following elements:

* an annual base salary of $591,084 (compared to current annual cash compensation of $528,860 at the University of Texas). The UC salary falls below the midpoint salary ($606,200) set for this position by the Board of Regents and below the median salary ($644,900) of leaders of similar public and private universities used by the California Postsecondary Education Commission for comparison purposes.
* as an exception to policy, supplemental pension funding amounting to $228,000 in 2008-09 and varying somewhat each year thereafter. This funding, in combination with normal UC Retirement Plan benefits, is intended to produce a UC retirement benefit comparable to what Yudof would have expected to receive at his present employer. (The University of Texas presently provides Yudof $250,000 per year in supplemental deferred compensation in addition to his base salary and normal retirement benefits.)
* an automobile allowance of $743 per month or $8,916 per year;
* university-provided housing, as a condition of employment;
* reasonable lodging, transportation and other business-related expenses associated with university business prior to his relocation, along with reimbursement of actual costs for packing and relocation of household effects and library;
* consistent with past practice, if Yudof assumes a UC faculty position immediately after his tenure as UC president, the university will arrange for the relocation of his personal belongings, and he will be eligible for a Mortgage Origination Program loan in order to purchase a primary residence;
* use of administrative funds for official entertainment and other purposes allowed by policy; and
* standard health, pension and senior management benefits, and standard sabbatical, sick leave and vacation accrual.

The University of California, recognized worldwide for its academic distinction, includes more than 220,000 students, 170,000 faculty and staff, and an $18 billion annual budget at its 10 campuses at Berkeley, Davis, Irvine, Los Angeles, Merced, Riverside, San Diego, San Francisco, Santa Cruz and Santa Barbara. The university offers programs in more than 150 disciplines, many of which are ranked among the top 10 nationally, and for the last 12 years has generated more patents than any other university in the nation. UC’s five medical centers support the clinical teaching programs of the university’s medical and health sciences schools and handle more than three million patient visits each year. The UC system also is involved in managing the U.S. Department of Energy national laboratories at Berkeley, Livermore and Los Alamos.

The University of California, Riverside ( is a doctoral research university, a living laboratory for groundbreaking exploration of issues critical to Inland Southern California, the state and communities around the world. Reflecting California's diverse culture, UCR's enrollment has exceeded 21,000 students. The campus opened a medical school in 2013 and has reached the heart of the Coachella Valley by way of the UCR Palm Desert Center. The campus has an annual statewide economic impact of more than $1 billion.

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