Board Of Regents Elects First Female Chair

The UT System Board of Regents unanimously elected regent Colleen McHugh Wednesday to be the new chair of the board, becoming the board’s first-ever female chair.

McHugh replaces James Huffines. Huffines, who had served as chair twice, first from 2004 to 2007 and again from April 2009 until yesterday, announced in December that he would step down as leader but remain a regent.

McHugh is now the first female chair of the Board of Regents in its 128-year history. She has served on the board since 2005. 

It’s not the first time she’s paved the way for women. McHugh was appointed by Governor Perry in 1998 to be the first woman on the Texas Public Safety Commission, and she went on to chair the commission.

She also has served as president of the State Bar of Texas and was the first female chair of its board of directors.

McHugh is from Corpus Christi and holds an undergraduate degree from Southern Methodist University and a law degree from St. Mary’s University School of Law.

In the same meeting yesterday, the board also approved tuition increases of around 4 percent for each of the system’s nine academic campuses.

UT Austin’s students will now pay $4,709 in 2010-11 (for resident undergraduates) and $4,895 in 2011-12, as recommended by the Tuition Policy Advisory Committee and then approved by President Powers and the Board of Regents. 

The increase includes a student fee of $65 per semester to pay for the construction of the Student Activities Center, which is set to open in spring 2011.


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