New Interim Regional Chancellor for USF St. Petersburg

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. (Dec. 17, 2008) – Regional Chancellor Karen A. White has announced she will take a new role in the USF President’s office as Senior Advisor to the President for Urban and Metropolitan Higher Education Initiatives, focused on relationship building with organizations such as the American Council on Education.  Margaret Sullivan, a national leader in higher education administration, will take over as Interim Regional Chancellor January 5, 2009.


“We’re committed to a powerful and fully accredited university at USF St. Petersburg,” USF President Judy Genshaft said. “USF is fortunate to have Margaret Sullivan available to position us for success in St. Petersburg, and Karen White to develop national relationships for the entire USF system.”


Karen White, AMusD, (University of Arizona), was appointed Regional Chancellor in 2003, and led USF St. Petersburg’s transition to an autonomously accredited institution. In President Genshaft’s office, she will develop relationships with the American Council on Education, which President Genshaft will chair in 2009.


This opportunity allows White to return to her research interest of the last 20 years of her career: the metropolitan university. White was one of the philosophical leaders who created the Coalition of Urban and Metropolitan Universities in 1988 and was a coauthor of its seminal article “Metropolitan Universities: Model for the 21st Century.”


"Under her tenure as Regional Chancellor, USF St. Petersburg put many of its dreams into place," President Genshaft said. In June of 2006 USF St. Petersburg was the first regional institution to achieve accreditation in Florida.


Since 2003 USF St. Petersburg has invested $55 million in capital construction on its campus including its first residence hall, parking garage, Barnes & Noble Bookstore, Coquina Café, Piano Man Research Labs, and the Science and Technology Building and Central Lawn projects under construction in the heart of campus. Both will open fall 2009 and transform the campus’ Second Street corridor into a tree-lined pedestrian promenade that symbolizes the institution’s partnership with the community.


Prior to USF St. Petersburg, Dr. White served as the Dean of the College of Fine Arts and Professor of Music at the University of Nebraska at Omaha, Executive Assistant to the Chancellor of the University of Maryland System, a consultant to the National Association of State Universities and Land Grant Colleges on urban and metropolitan university issues, Assistant to the President at Wright State University, and Professor of Music at Southeastern Louisiana University.


Margaret Sullivan, PhD (Georgia State University), has had extensive leadership experience in public and private universities. As consultant, she has helped more than 200 institutions and university systems in the southeastern United States as well as Ecuador, Nicaragua, Mexico and the Virgin Islands. She previously consulted with USF St. Petersburg in preparing the institution for initial accreditation with the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools.


Dr. Sullivan began her career as a faculty member in special education and urban life at Georgia State University, where she became Assistant Vice President. In 1989, she became Vice President for Academic Affairs at Brenau University in Georgia, before becoming a consultant for higher education.


She is currently President of the Southeastern Consulting Group in Higher Education, and before that was Director of the Consulting Network of the Commission on Colleges of the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools.


After Hurricane Katrina she served as a consultant to the University of Southern Mississippi where she wrote and monitored grants totaling more than $18 million. Among other projects, those funds built a marine science laboratory.


View Dr. Sullivan's vita.


The University of South Florida is among the nation's top 63 public research universities and one of 39 community-engaged, public universities as designated by the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching.  It is one of Florida's top three research universities. USF was awarded more than $360 million in research contracts and grants last year. The university offers 219 degree programs at the undergraduate, graduate, specialist and doctoral levels, including the doctor of medicine. The university has a $1.8 billion annual budget, an annual economic impact of $3.2 billion, and serves more than 45,000 students on campuses in Tampa, St. Petersburg, Sarasota-Manatee and Lakeland. USF is a member of the Big East Athletic Conference. 

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