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May 23, 2018

Interim president named for UMaine Farmington

Courtesy / University of Maine System
Courtesy / University of Maine System
Eric C. Brown, provost and vice president for academic affairs at UMaine Farmington since December 2016, has been named interim president of UMF, effective July 1.

The University of Maine System Board of Trustees unanimously appointed Eric C. Brown as interim President of the University of Maine at Farmington.

The one-year term is effective July 1.

Brown has served as provost and vice president for academic affairs at UMaine Farmington since December 2016. His appointment follows the announcement in March that Kathryn A. Foster, who served six years as president at the Farmington campus, has accepted an appointment to serve as the next president of The College of New Jersey starting in July.

Brown also has been a member of the University's President's Council and the System's Chief Academic Officers Council and a faculty member in the English department at UMF since 2003.

Working for a smooth transition

University of Maine System Chancellor James H. Page recommended the appointment of Dr. Brown as interim president to the board after engaging with more than 200 campus and community members on the topic of transitional leadership for UMF following the March 27 announcement that Foster had accepted the job in her home state of New Jersey.

"Leadership transitions are an opportunity for our campuses to consider how best to advance our One University service to our students and state," Page said in a news release. "I am pleased that Dr. Brown has agreed to provide steady and proven direction while we assess institutional priorities and engage our campus and community stakeholders in a discussion about how UMF can be an even stronger contributor to public higher education's response to Maine's dire demographic and workforce challenges."

Page will continue his engagement with campus and community leaders over the summer before advancing a leadership search recommendation to the board of trustees.

Brown said as interim president his approach "will be to identify, encourage, and invest in our best ideas, our more innovative programs, our most energetic and forward-looking initiatives."

"There is no shortage of excellence at UMF, and I believe my experience as a scholar, teacher, and administrator here has well-prepared me to draw on this excellence to work towards solutions to both the immediate problems at hand and the larger challenges ahead," he said. "I grew up in Maine, graduated from high school in Maine, and went through public universities for most of my education. I know where our students are coming from, literally and figuratively, and how much is at stake for them in our success as an institution. I am very much looking forward to working toward the sustainability and growth of a place I care deeply about."

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