by Walter Kraft, Published February 14, 2011
YPSILANTI - Governor Rick Snyder has appointed Beth Fitzsimmons to the Eastern Michigan University Board of Regents, replacing former Regent Mohamed Okdie who resigned on Feb. 7.
Fitzsimmons, of Ann Arbor, is president of Information Strategists LLC. The company, which provides information and knowledge services to high tech companies, was founded in 1987. Since 1975, she has worked with high tech companies and government agencies such as the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office, Department of Defense, Office of the President of the United States, National Academy of Public Administration; and CENDI; an Executive Branch interagency working group of scientific and technical information managers.
In 2003, Fitzsimmons was appointed chair of the National Commission on Libraries and Information Science by President George W. Bush and was confirmed by the Senate. She served in that capacity for five years. Nationally, she has served on the Department of Commerce NTIS (National Technical Information Service) Advisory Board and on the School of Information and Library Science Board of Visitors at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Locally, she is the current president of the Rotary Club of Ann Arbor and has served on the board of the Ann Arbor YMCA.
Fitzsimmons received a bachelor's degree in chemistry from Simmons College, a master's in library science from SUNY (Albany), and a doctorate from the School of Public Policy, George Mason University in science, technology, and information policy.
In announcing Fitzsimmons' appointment, Gov. Snyder said, "Beth is interested in seeing every Eastern Michigan University student succeed. Her background and expertise in business consulting will be an asset to the university's efforts and work in ensuring a world-class, affordable education."
Eastern Michigan University Board Chair Roy Wilbanks said, "Dr. Fitzsimmons, a successful entrepreneur and business woman, will be an excellent contributor to Eastern Michigan University's Board of Regents. My colleagues on the board join me in welcoming her."
Eastern Michigan University President Susan Martin said, "We are pleased to have another board member with significant experience working with government and business. Dr. Fitzsimmons' leadership in the information and knowledge services industries meshes well with Eastern's focus on the sciences and technology."
As the replacement for Okdie, Fitzsimmons' term will run through December 2016, the original term for Okdie. The Board of Regents is the governing body of Eastern Michigan University and comprises eight regents who are appointed to eight-year terms by the governor (when not replacing a Regent who has resigned or retired). In addition to the new appointment of Fitzsimmons, the current Regents are Roy Wilbanks, chair; Francine Parker, vice chair; Floyd Clack; Michael Hawks; Mike Morris, Thomas Sidlik; and, James Stapleton.
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