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Robert K. Sheridan re-elected to University of Massachusetts Building Authority chairmanship; lower rate saves UMass $52 million in borrowing costs

BOSTON - Robert K. Sheridan has been elected to a new term as chairman of the University of Massachusetts Building Authority, the University announced today.

Sheridan, who previously served as a University of Massachusetts Trustee, was appointed to the University of Massachusetts Building Authority (UMBA) in 2002 and was first elected chairman of the 11-person Authority in 2008. Authority members are appointed by the Governor.

University of Massachusetts President Jack M. Wilson said the UMass system will benefit from Sheridan's continued leadership at UMBA, which was established in 1960 and has as its mission building and renovating facilities on all five UMass campuses.

"Bob Sheridan has provided the University with steadfast service and vital leadership for nearly a decade, first as a member of our Board of Trustees and now as chairman of the University of Massachusetts Building Authority," President Wilson said. "In his current capacity, Bob is playing a major role as the University transforms its facilities and builds for the future. Bob Sheridan is a builder and a leader, and we value and appreciate his continued service."

Sheridan said he was pleased to continue on as chairman.

"I appreciate the confidence that my colleagues on the University of Massachusetts Building Authority have expressed in me and look forward to continuing to play a role in an area that is of such critical importance to the University," Sheridan said. "We are committed to providing the students, faculty and staff of the University with the facilities they need to be successful and that will allow UMass to continue to make a profound and enduring contribution to our Commonwealth."

Also re-elected to University of Massachusetts Building Authority leadership positions were Richard J. Lawton as vice chairman and Paul J. Carney as secretary-treasurer.

Sheridan, who served on the University of Massachusetts Board of Trustees from 2002 through 2007 and was the Board's vice chairman in 2006-2007, is President and Chief Operating Officer of the Savings Bank Life Insurance Company of Massachusetts (SBLI) in Woburn. He also serves as Chairman of the Executive Committee and as a member of the Board of Directors of SBLI.
Sheridan, who lives in Hingham, is Chairman of the Board of Directors of the Life Insurance Association of Massachusetts and is a member of the Executive Committee and Board of Directors of the New England Council. He also serves as a member of the Board of Directors of the New England Center for Children, as a member of the Board of Trustees of the Massachusetts Taxpayers Foundation, and as a member of the Dean's Advisory Committee of Suffolk Law School. He is a member of the Massachusetts Bar, the Massachusetts Business Roundtable and the Chief Executives Club of Boston. Sheridan formerly served as Chairman of the Massachusetts Affordable Housing Alliance Capital Campaign.

Sheridan has received numerous awards and honors including: the 2005 Medal of Hope Award from the Organization for a New Equality, the 2005 Progress and Promise Award from the American Liver Foundation and the 2007 Children of Promise Award from the New England Center for Children. In 2009, he received the Rose Pessin Memorial Award from the Arc of Greater Boston, the Golden Bridges Award from the Irish Echo, the Dr. John I. Sandson Lifetime Achievement Award from the Arthritis Foundation, and was honored by the Veteran's Legal Assistance Network. In 2010, Sheridan received the David C. Knapp Award for trusteeship from the New England Board of Higher Education. 

The University of Massachusetts Building Authority has played a key role in the building boom that has seen the University invest $2 billion in new facilities and renovation projects over the past decade.

With UMass now set to go forward with an array of new projects, the University of Massachusetts Building Authority last week sold a record $568 million in bonds, at a final net rate of 3.3 percent. The 3.3 percent interest rate is considerably lower than the 3.8 percent rate that the UMass Board of Trustees anticipated when it approved the bond issue in September, resulting in a $52.6 million reduction in debt service over the 30 year life of the bonds.

Prior to the sale, Fitch Ratings upgraded the University's credit rating to AA from its previous AA-. Moody's Investor Service also confirmed its Aa2 rating for the University as part of this bond issue.

"With this latest bond-sale success and with all that it does to provide world-class facilities on all five campuses, the University of Massachusetts Building Authority is a vital asset for the University of Massachusetts, and we appreciate all that its members and staff do for the University's students, faculty and staff," President Wilson said.

Contact: Robert P. Connolly, 617-287-7073

10/27/10

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Communications Staff Directory

Robert P. Connolly
Vice President for Strategic Communications and University Spokesperson
617.548.0238 (cell)
617.287.7073 (office)
rconnolly@umassp.edu

Ann Scales
Director of Communications
617.838.3963 (cell)
617.287.4084 (office)
ascales@umassp.edu

JoAnn Conley
Communications Coordinator/Writer
617.287.5538 (Office)
jconley@umassp.edu

Jan Brogen
Senior Writer
617.287.4027 (Office)
jbrogen@umassp.edu

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