Times profiles new Regents Chancellor Merryl Tisch

Monday, April 6th, 2009 at 8:25 pm by

On Saturday, the New York Times ran a profile of the new Chancellor (chair) of the State Board of Regents, Dr. Merryl Tisch.  It provides some insights into her family background, concerns and operating style.

We expect her to be a forceful leader of the Regents, as the article indicates:

Dr. Tisch’s ability to press her agenda – closing the achievement gap among demographic groups, bolstering career and technical education, and giving equal access to disabled students are among the priorities – is strengthened not only by her ascent to chief regent but also by her rank in New York’s ruling class as the wife of James S. Tisch, the chief executive of the Loews Corporation, a conglomerate that includes hotels, insurance and oil-drilling operations.

Reflecting her direct style and personal connections, the Times quotes Dr. Tisch, “When my refrigerator is broken, I don’t call the service department.  I call the head of G.E.”

The State Education Department will be undergoing a transition with Commissioner Mills’ departure around the end of the school year.  With billions of federal funds available on a competitive basis, this would be a bad time for uncertain leadership at SED.  Having a strong board chair may be fortuitous right now.

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