On May 18, the University of California Board of Regents elected Sherry Lansing as the new board chair for a one-year term beginning July 1.
Lansing, who served as vice chairman of the regents, succeeds Russell Gould, whose term as chairman expired. Both Gould and Lansing had served two consecutive terms as chair and vice chair.
“I’m honored to serve as chairman during these difficult economic times,” Lansing said. “To meet our challenges, we have to look for cost savings as well as other sources of revenue. But as we face these financial struggles, one thing we will never, ever sacrifice is the quality of a UC education.”
Lansing was appointed to the board by Gov. Gray Davis in March 1999 and reappointed in 2010 to a 12-year term by Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger. In addition to serving as the regents vice chair, she chaired the board’s Health Services Committee and served on the Educational Policy and Governance committees.
Lansing started out as a high school math and science teacher in Los Angeles public schools before beginning her career in the motion picture industry. She is the former chairman and CEO of Paramount Pictures; prior to that, she ran her own production company. During her more than 30 years in the motion picture industry, she was involved in the production, marketing and distribution of more than 200 films, including Academy Award winners Forrest Gump, Braveheart and Titanic. In 1984, she was the first woman to head a major film studio when she was appointed president of 20th Century Fox.
After retiring in 2005, she launched the Sherry Lansing Foundation, a nonprofit that supports cancer research, health and public education. Primetime LAUSD, one of the foundation’s initiatives, matches retirees with volunteer positions in the Los Angeles public schools. Lansing also founded the EnCorps Teachers Program, which retrains transitioning technology professionals to serve as California public middle and high school science and math teachers.
Gov. Schwarzenegger appointed Gould to a 12-year term in 2005. Gould is a partner with California Strategies LLC, Financial Services Practice. From 1993 to 1996, he was director of the California Department of Finance, and prior to that, served as Secretary of the Health and Welfare Agency from 1991 to 1993.
The board also elected Regent Bruce Varner as vice chairman. Varner, a partner with the Varner & Brandt law practice, was appointed by Gov. Schwarzenegger to a 12-year term in 2006. He has served as chair of the board’s Committee on Compensation, vice chair of the Committee on Finance and the Committee on Governance and as a member of the Committee on Oversight of the DOE Laboratories.
The board also made standing committee assignments for the coming fiscal year. The chairs and vice chairs are as follows:
Committee on Compensation: Fred Ruiz, chair; George Kieffer, vice chair;
Committee on Compliance and Audit: Charlene Zettel, chair; Lori Pelliccioni, vice chair;
Committee on Educational Policy: Bonnie Reiss, chair; George Kieffer, vice chair;
Committee on Finance: Bruce Varner, chair; Monica Lozano, vice chair;
Committee on Grounds and Buildings: Hadi Makarechian, chair; Bruce Hallett, vice chair;
Committee on Health Services: William De La Peña, chair; Norman Pattiz, vice chair;
Committee on Investments: Paul Wachter, chair; George Marcus, vice chair;
Committee on Long Range Planning: Leslie Tang Schilling, chair; David Crane, vice chair;
Committee on Oversight of the DOE Laboratories: Norman Pattiz, chair; William De La Peña, vice chair.
Biographical information for all UC Regents is available at http://www.universityofcalifornia.edu/regents/regbios/welcome.html.