Campus & Community

Former Denver Mayor Federico Pena among new Board of Trustees members

As the University of Denver begins to envision its long-term future by embarking on an in-depth strategic planning process, the University’s Board of Trustees has elected three new trustees who will spotlight the University’s many connections with the city of Denver and its commitment to the future of higher education and the cultivation of philanthropy.

The three newly elected members are: Mary Sue Coleman, former president of the University of Michigan; DU alumnus Craig Harrison, an entrepreneur and managing director of a Denver-based investment firm; and Federico Peña, former mayor of the city of Denver, who also served as secretary of energy and secretary of transportation under the Clinton administration.

“Each of these individuals brings unique strengths and perspectives to the University of Denver, and with their election, I believe we have complemented the skills and commitment of our existing board members and have positioned the board to be able to provide strong guidance through the strategic planning process and beyond,” says Doug Scrivner, chair of the Board of Trustees.

Bringing more than 20 years of higher education leadership experience to the DU board is Coleman, former president of the University of Michigan and the University of Iowa. Most recently, in her tenure at Michigan, Coleman led major initiatives to enhance interdisciplinary programs, student residential life, global engagement and the value of innovation and creativity. Her leadership extended to efforts to build the economic vitality of the state of Michigan.

“DU is a vibrant university in the heart of Denver. I look forward to working with Chancellor Chopp, the Board and other members of the DU community to forge an even closer partnership with the city while raising the national profile of DU,” Coleman says.

“Mary Sue brings such a rich background of higher education leadership,” Scrivner says. “I look forward to hearing how she will apply her success strategies in fundraising campaigns and growing a university’s research prominence as she did at Michigan.”

Just a few years after graduating from DU, Harrison (BSBA ’03) co-founded a Young Alumni Scholarship fund at the University of Denver. He most recently helped start the General George W. Casey Jr. Endowed Scholarship Fund at the University’s Josef Korbel School of International Studies. As a trustee, Harrison will bring his entrepreneurial and fundraising expertise to the DU board, along with his experience as current managing director of Arrowhead Partners LLC, an investment management firm involved with operating companies and water resources throughout the Rocky Mountain region. He also serves as managing director of West Creek Partners, a closely held investment firm, which he co-founded in 2011. Harrison has shared his expertise with the University before, serving most recently on the University Advancement Committee of the DU board and on the 2014 Founders Day volunteer committee.

“As an alumnus I have tremendous pride for the University, and I look forward to serving as a trustee under Chancellor Chopp and on behalf of the students, alumni, faculty and staff,” Harrison says.

“Craig’s mix of business expertise in addressing larger societal needs and his enthusiasm for giving back to DU make him an outstanding addition to the board,” Scrivner says.

Peña already serves at DU as a member of the board for the Latino Leadership Institute at the Daniels College of Business. He currently is a senior advisor to Vestar Capital Partners and to the Colorado Impact Fund, a venture capital fund dedicated to supporting local companies that generate consistent investment returns in addition to positive community outcomes.

“I look forward to assisting DU expand its connection to the Denver region by identifying opportunities to address local challenges and to become more embedded in the long-term growth of our dynamic region,” Peña says.

“Federico brings a keen understanding of the complexities as well as opportunities we have in Denver and the Rocky Mountain region, which will be an asset to DU’s strategic planning focus on our relationship to Denver and beyond,” Scrivner says.

“I am exceptionally pleased to add these talented new trustees to our board,” Scrivner says. “Together, our new board looks forward to providing guidance and oversight to DU’s leadership as it leads the University through a significant strategic planning process.”

For more information on these and all University of Denver Board of Trustees members, plus descriptions of board committees, visit the Board of Trustees website.


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