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E. Thomas Sullivan.

E. Thomas Sullivan

University names new chief academic officer

Originally published on May 25, 2004

President Bob Bruininks has named E. Thomas Sullivan as the new senior vice president for academic affairs and provost at the University of Minnesota. Sullivan will replace Christine Maziar, who has resigned to accept the position of vice president and associate provost at the University of Notre Dame.

"It is with mixed emotions that I announce Christine Maziar's resignation to assume an outstanding leadership opportunity at the University of Notre Dame," said Bruininks. "During her tenure at the University, Dr. Maziar has many accomplishments, including strengthening our academic, research and graduate programs, and we owe her a deep debt of gratitude."

Among her accomplishments, Maziar oversaw the implementation of a new grants management system, hailed as a national model. She also established a matching program to fund graduate fellowships and oversaw production of the annual University Plan and Performance Accountability Report.

Sullivan will become the senior vice president for academic affairs and provost--the chief academic officer for the Twin Cities campus--on July 1, pending approval by the Board of Regents.

"Tom has a deep commitment to advancing the University's teaching, research, and outreach mission," said Bruininks. "He understands the University and is an outstanding leader who can get things done by building consensus within the University community and among our numerous external constituencies. I can think of no one better able to step into this job and hit the ground running."

In quickly naming Maziar's replacement, Bruininks stressed that the University cannot afford to fall behind. "We are in a very competitive environment, and to remain world-class during this tough economic period, our ability to move strategically, but steadily, forward on our priorities is more important than ever," he said.

Sullivan, 55, was the dean of the University of Minnesota Law School from 1995 to 2002. He was dean of the Law School at the University of Arizona from 1989-1995 and has been a professor of law at Washington University and the University of Missouri.

During his tenure as dean at the U's Law School, Sullivan was instrumental in helping recruit high-caliber faculty and a more qualified and diverse student body. Under his leadership, the Law School exceeded its fundraising goal for Campaign Minnesota by more than 70 percent. He is a nationally recognized authority on antitrust law and complex litigation, having written or co-written eight books and more than 30 articles and essays on antitrust. He remains active in the legal fields of antitrust, civil procedure, business regulation, and trial practice.

"I am delighted to be asked to serve in this critical leadership role," Sullivan said. "I have a great deal of love and passion for the University, and it will be a privilege to work with President Bruininks and the Board of Regents to advance the University's academic excellence and core mission to ensure it remains among the very best in the country."