By Joann Fan
The University of Minnesota Board of Regents named Eric Kaler, ninth provost at Stony Brook University, the president-designate on Thursday, November 18 after two days of public meetings and interviews during his visit to the university.
He is set to succeed Robert Bruiniks in June of 2011, nine years after the beginning of Bruinik’s presidency in 2002.
What seems like a recent development, board chair Clyde Allen has said, was the culmination of six months of careful reviews and interviews of potential candidates. Only a few weeks ago, four others were in the running, but two dropped out due to not wanting to be identified publicly, and Kaler remained the only finalist.
His base salary at Stony Brook is $354,000, and he will be making $610,000 at the university of Minnesota, which is $155,000 more than the outgoing president. Bruiniks’s current base salary is $455,000.
Kaler, who received his PhD in chemical engineering from the University of Minnesota, will only be the second alumnus to serve as president.
He has authored or co-authored more than 200 papers and holds 10 U.S. patents. He became a member of the National Academy of Engineers in February of this year, which is one of the highest distinctions awarded to engineers. He has won many awards and much recognition for his accomplishments.
As provost of Stony Brook University, Kaler has been responsible for the academic mission of West Campus, directly supervising all academic units, support services and operations and coordinating all academic programs. The provost acts on behalf of the president in his absence. Many university programs and their leaders report directly to Kaler.