June 28, 2002

Good Morning:

At the end of the academic year I told you I would send a Tulane Talk to you over the summer as events and circumstances warranted. At the time I didn't realize I would be sending you news that Tulane made history.

But that is just what happened recently when the Board of Tulane selected Catherine D. Pierson as its new chair-elect. Cathy, who received master's degrees in both history and social work from Tulane University, is the first woman in Tulane's 168-year history to head the university's governing and policy-making authority. Her three-year term as chair will begin July 1, 2003.

Cathy became a member of the Board of Tulane in 1995. She is a past member of the board's Physical Plant and Campus Development Committee, the Liaison Committee on the Planning Process, the Finance Committee and the Honorary Degree Committee. She was also a member of the Presidential Search Committee who, I'm glad to say, brought me to Tulane. Cathy currently serves as chair of the Tulane University Healthcare System Governing Board and is a member of the Tulane University Health Sciences Center Committee, the Development Committee, the Academic Affairs Committee, the Executive Committee, the Nominating Committee and the Personnel Committee. She also served as founding chair of the Tulane Cancer Center Community Advisory Board and is a member of the Tulane Murphy Foundation Board of Directors. In addition, she serves as the Board of Tulane's representative to the School of Social Work's Advisory Council.

Besides her involvement with Tulane, Cathy is also a member of the boards of the Economics Institute and the Institute of Mental Hygiene. She is past president and founding board member of the Louisiana Children's Museum and has served on the boards of the YWCA, the New Orleans Center for Creative Arts, the Bureau of Governmental Research and Kent School in Kent, Connecticut.

In addition to Cathy's appointment, Linda Smith Wilson was also selected to join the Board of Tulane. Linda was the last president of Radcliffe College before it merged with Harvard University in 1999 and became the Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Studies.

She received a B.A. from Tulane's Newcomb College and a Ph.D. from the University of Wisconsin. She was a research faculty member in chemistry at the University of Maryland and then served as a senior administrator in three major research universities prior to becoming president of Radcliffe in 1989.

Linda has served on numerous national advisory groups appointed by federal government science agencies, the National Academy of Sciences, the American Council on Education and scientific societies. She has also served as a trustee of the Massachusetts General Hospital, as a director of Citizen's Financial Group, Inc., and as a director of Value Line, Inc. Currently Wilson is a director of Myriad Genetics, Inc., Inacom, Inc., and ICANN (the Internet Corporation for the Assignment of Names and Numbers). She is a trustee of the Committee on Economic Development and an Honorary Trustee of the Massachusetts General Hospital. She is also on the board of visitors of the University of Wisconsin College of Letters and Sciences and the Newcomb Dean's Advisory Council.

She is a member of the Institute of Medicine of the National Academy of Sciences, a fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, and a member of the American Chemical Society and the Society of Research Administrators. In 1986 Linda received the Centennial Award for Outstanding Accomplishment from Newcomb and in 1993 was awarded honorary doctorates from Newcomb and from the University of Maryland at College Park. More recently she received the Distinguished Alumni Award from the University of Wisconsin.

I know with the experience and leadership of these two outstanding people our board will continue to guide the entire Tulane community with integrity and wisdom. I look forward to working with them and all the members of our board for the betterment of our university and our community.

Have a great weekend,


Office of the President Emeritus, 1555 Poydras St, Suite 700, New Orleans, LA 70112 504-274-3638