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General Assembly ratifies trustees' terms

by Karen A. Grava - May 1, 2006

The General Assembly has ratified new terms for several members of the Board of Trustees, including Dr. John W. Rowe, Michael Bozzuto, Michael J. Martinez, Wayne Shepperd, and Richard Treibick.

The General Assembly also confirmed Rowe’s re-appointment as chairman of the board, with a term to expire on June 30, 2011.

In testimony before the Executive and Legislative Nominations Committee, Rowe said, “Over the last few years, UConn has continued its dramatic ascension to the ranks of public institutions of higher education nationwide.

“When I stood before this committee in February of 2004, I observed that the University was in a ‘renaissance,’ assisted in large part by the state’s significant investment in the infrastructure. The challenge, as I saw it then and see it today, is to continue to develop and execute an academic strategic plan that delivers on the promise and maximizes the state’s investment.

" We must invest strategically in core competencies and introduce new programs that will solidify our standings and position us for future growth.”

Rowe, who joined the board in 2003, is executive chairman of Aetna Inc., one of the nation’s leading health care and related benefits organizations.

“One of the true joys of being a trustee is to be able to interact routinely with UConn students and faculty,” Rowe said.

“We have a premier faculty capable of delivering excellence in teaching and research, and an outstanding student body prepared to learn. The president continues to provide excellent leadership.

“The University’s principal product is its graduates who, along with the University at large, generate significant contributions to the state’s economy while representing some of its finest intellectual capital and forming an irresistible magnet for present and future economic development,” he added.

He told the General Assembly that under UConn 2000, 85 new building projects have been completed, but the program has not been without controversy.

“The Board of Trustees responded proactively to the first recognition of lapses in compliance and other aspects of projects associated with UConn 2000,” he said.

“The board looks forward to continuing to work with the General Assembly as we continue to implement the University’s corrective measures and, with appropriate legislation in place, install additional structures and mechanisms that will serve to expand the board’s capacity and ensure the most informed, cost-effective, and responsible use of public funds.”

Bozzuto, of Avon, whose term will also expire on June 30, 2011, is the chairman, president, and CEO of Bozzuto’s Inc., a Cheshire-based wholesale food and household products distributor.

He joined the board in July 2005, and is a member of the financial affairs and institutional advancement committees.

Martinez, whose tenure until June 30, 2011 was approved, is the founder and president of Martinez and Associates, a Hartford-based information technology firm.

A native of Havana, Cuba, and now a resident of East Lyme, he has been a trustee since 1999. He is a member of the academic affairs, financial affairs, and the joint audit and compliance committees.

Shepperd, of Danbury, is the former president and publisher of The News-Times.

His term on the board expires on June 30, 2007, since he is filling a slot previously occupied by James Abromaitis, who remains on the board by virtue of his position as commissioner of economic development.

Shepperd is a member of the academic affairs; buildings, grounds and environment; and student life committees.

Treibick, of Greenwich, is the managing member of Alex Capital Management Corp, which manages equity investments in the energy sector.

Appointed in 1993, he is head of the board’s institutional advancement committee, and a member of the executive/ strategic planning committee. He was reappointed until June 2011.

With the exception of the two student trustees and the two alumni trustees, who are elected, trustees are appointed by the governor and their tenure is ratified by the General Assembly. Terms are six years.

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